Albania names Austria utility to build three plants totaling 400 MW

Austria utility EVN AG said January 25 it won an international tender to build three hydroelectric projects in Albania totaling 400 MW.

The three peaking hydropower projects with reservoir storage on the Devoll River are to have a capacity of 400 MW and generate about 1,000 gigawatt-hours annually, the company said. (HNN 11/16/07)

Although EVN declined to comment on how much the concession was worth, the government’s Albanian Telegraphic Agency (ATA) said the project would require an investment of about 900 million euros (US$1.32 billion). Terms and conditions of the concession are to be negotiated with the Albanian government in coming months, EVN said.

The government found in July 2007 that the plan by EVN to develop the three hydro plants was in the public interest, giving EVN an advantage in bidding for Devoll River water usage rights. The government finding gave EVN a bonus of 10 evaluation points, from a possible 100, in advance of the open international tender for the development of hydropower on the Devoll.

While 12 Albanian and foreign companies expressed interest in the tendering, ATA said only two submitted bids, EVN and Landsvirkjun &Kurum Holding.

ATA said the previously proposed 80-MW Banja (or Banje) project is a component of the concession. Other long-standing proposed hydro sites on the Devoll River include 115-MW Bratila (or Bratile) and 80-MW Upper Devoll.

EVN has said its proposal is the first concrete result of a January 2007 cooperative hydro development agreement between Albania, Austria’s federal province of Lower Austria, and EVN.

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