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EBRD to finance first utility-scale renewable project in Croatia outside of a subsidy scheme

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is extending a 43 million euros loan to Kunovac, a limited liability company jointly owned by renewable energy developer Taaleri Energia’s SolarWind II Funds and ENCRO Kunovac for the first utility-scale renewable project in Croatia developed outside of a renewables subsidy scheme.

The EBRD proceeds will finance the construction and operation of two onshore wind farms in the Zadar region, with a joint total grid capacity of 111 megawatts (MW), enough to power 85,000 households. They will also help to avoid more than 78,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually and are expected to increase the country’s current electricity generation from renewable sources (excluding large hydro) by around 10 per cent. The EBRD financing will be complemented by parallel loans from Zagrebacka Banka and the Croatian Bank for Reconstruction and Development for a total debt financing package of 126 million euros.

“We are delighted at the opportunity to support this investment, which will secure more clean energy for the citizens of Croatia,” said EBRD Director and Head of Energy for Europe Grzegorz Zielinski. “The EBRD has always been at the forefront of supporting innovative and bold investments and we are pleased to support this project, which is among the first outside a subsidy scheme and is introducing new ways of structuring and financing renewable projects, not only in Croatia but also in other countries where the Bank operates.”

“Taaleri Energia is pleased to be making a contribution to the further growth of renewable energy generation capacity in Croatia,” commented Kai Rintala, Managing Director of Taaleri Energia. “This investment is being realised thanks to the close collaboration and efforts of a number of our key partners, including the EBRD. We look forward to building upon this first investment in Croatia in the coming months and years.”

This is the EBRD’s first wind-farm investment in Croatia. Moreover, it showcases a novel financing structure in the country, combining a corporate power purchase agreement and a merchant-based financing structure.

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