Tempo Crucial for Success

Energy Transition at Western Balkans

The European Union has just finished the first phase of the beginning of the green transition and, judging by the current high gas and electricity prices, it is evident that the energy policy of Brussels was unsuccessful - said Mr Dragan Vlaisavljević, executive director of electricity trade in Electric Power Industry of Serbia, at the conference of Balkans Energy portal.

  • The Western Balkans is an impoverished region dependent on coal and demanding a longer period of transition or significantly more financial funds, which it does not possess. The length of the process of change is closely connected with money. It cannot happen fast and with no money – underlined Mr Vlaisavljević. – The EU and Energy Community demand a faster energy transition at the Western Balkans, but they do not pay attention to all the principles that need to be followed. During the last five years, all of their studies have stated “so what" to Serbia importing 40 percent of electricity in 2030 and 2035. It is okay to them, but it is not good for the country's energy safety. Direct application of such a concept would lead to higher electricity price for households, which is now far from the market price.

Mr Vlaisavljević mentioned price fluctuations and increase as some of the challenges and risks brought by the energy transition. It could lead to a decrease of industry competition, and the challenges are the needs for base energy and balancing, the issues of the financing methods of investments in the renewable energy sources capacities and increase of indebtedness.

Ms Zorana Mihajlović, minister of mining and energy, commented that decarbonization of Serbia until 2050 was inevitable and she invited the experts to join and assist energy transition, which would lead to excluding lobbying out of the process.

  • Sustainable energy transition is possible in the decades ahead of us, if we know our vision, plan and program – said Ms Mihajlović. – Energy investment plan has already been prepared, having the total value of almost EUR 18 billion, EUR 10 billion out of which is for electricity sector, and strategic documents shall be prepared by the end of the year. Green agenda means completely different functioning of public enterprises, which will have to keep up with all the changes and I emphasize the importance of unison and join effort in the interest of Serbia.

The chairman of the Board of Directors of Elektroprivreda Crne Gore, Mr Milutin Đukanović said that it must not be allowed for the green transition to manage us – but that we manage green transition. The conference attendees agreed that the energy transition was inevitable, but that it was the most important for Serbia to maintain energy independence while securing stable supply in the future.