For the past decades, Kosovo has faced serious energy challenges that have not only hindered its development and growth but have had a substantial negative effect on citizen’s health. Kosovo’s energy consumption is heavily reliant in its lignite plants, which produce around 95% of Kosovo’s electricity consumption. The lignite plants are outdated, unstable and unreliable, posing serious risks for the environment, economic growth, and health. It has become evident that reforms are needed in the energy sector to tackle this longstanding problem. A new 500 MW lignite plant, has been announced for development for many years, but failure to find potential investors has delayed the process.
Despite the many challenges that the energy sector faces, Kosovo is on a good path for making progress in terms of energy efficiency. The Government of Kosovo has recognized the need to modernize the country’s energy sector, yet progress is being made in terms of improving energy efficiency and developing renewable energy potential. With that said, Kosovo has implemented the National Renewable Energy Action Plan which sets out a target of 25% share of renewable energy sources to be met by 2020. The current renewable capacity in Kosovo is around 70 MW generated from small hydropower plants and approximately 32 MW from wind farms. Nonetheless, another 105 MW wind power plant, is being developed which is expected to commence production in 2021.
Given its 278 sunny days per year, Kosovo has a strong potential for using solar energy. Presently, there are two solar plants in operation with a capacity of 6 MW, but more developments are to be made. About a year ago, the Ministry of Economic Development has announced to transfer the quota of 100-120 MW for hydropower projects to solar and wind power projects. Importantly, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has announced that it “will assist the government, as transaction adviser, in defining the parameters and requirements to design and tender the first solar public-private partnership (PPP) project in Kosovo”. The parties have signed a cooperation agreement which sets the ground for the financial institution to advise the government on the development of a 50 MW solar power plant. Eventually, this will enable Kosovo to meet the EU obligations regarding the diversification of the energy mix.
Overall, it is evident that Kosovo has a long way forward for improving its energy sector and investing in renewable energy. Here at ECIKS, our consultants for renewable energy are experts for guiding the cost-effective development and implementation of energy projects in solar, hydropower, wind farms, and biomass energy generation.
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