Romania Eyeing 1.8 Bln In Energy Investments

Despite the global financial turmoil, Romania expects to have around 1.5-1.8 billion euros worth of investment this year in the energy sector alone, Economy Minister Adriean Videanu said on Wednesday.

“The money will come from government and private investments, and we will encourage new private initiatives,” Videanu told participants of an economic conference.

Experts say that despite the bad economic environment, Romania will continue to develop some new projects, mainly in wind power.

“This will be an year with new investments and, according to my information, at least two new wind parks will be commissioned”, said Sorin Vladescu, partner with a local law firm, without elaborating.

In recent years, major energy privatisations in Romania have been put on hold pending a decision concerning a planned integrated energy holding, made difficult by disagreements within the former centrist coalition government and among opposition parties.

Last October, the former government cleared a bill that sets up an integrated energy holding – called Electrica – which was supposed to incorporate Romania’s three remaining electricity distributors, hydro power producer Hidroelectrica and two major lignite-fired energy firms. The holding was planned to have an installed capacity of 10,000 MW and an estimated value of Euro 24 billion.

The new center-left government recently announced it will change the bill that set up the holding, but no clear plan has emerged yet.

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