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Dec 15, 2009 16:21 EEST
SKOPJE (Macedonia), December 15 (SeeNews) – Russia's Power Machines Company will upgrade Macedonia's biggest thermal power plant Bitola in a 55.9 million euro ($81.3 million) deal it has signed with local power producer Elektrani na Makedonija (ELEM) AD, state-run Macedonian Information Agency (MIA) reported on Tuesday.
Thirty-five million euro needed for the modernization of the plant's three power generation units will come from loans, while the remainder will be financed by ELEM’s own resources, MIA (www.mia.com.mk) said.
The upgrade will increase the coal-fired plant's installed capacity by 25 megawatts (MW) and its annual output will rise by 160-200 gigawatt-hours (GWh), MIA quoted ELEM’s director general, Vlatko Cingoski, as saying.
Bitola’s three units, which operate since 1988, have a combined installed capacity of 675 MW. Currently they generate a total of 4,600 GWh per year.
The upgrade should start in June 2010 and finish in 2012. The operational age of the plant is expected to increase by 20 years, MIA said.
The Bitola power plant accounted for some 80% of Macedonia's electricity production last year. Macedonia has two thermal and seven hydro power plants, which produced a combined 5,615 gigawatthours of electricity in 2008, up 1.9% from a year earlier.
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