Belgrade, Serbia, September 12, 2017—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is helping Serbia increase its supply
of renewable energy by lending €19.1 million to Elicio, a subsidiary of
Nethys Group, a Belgium-based energy and telecommunications group, for
the 42-megawatt Alibunar wind farm.
The agreement, which includes an A Loan of €15.5 million and a C Loan
of €3.6 million, was signed on June 28 and syndication was closed on September
11. Unicredit, the Netherlands
Development Finance Company (FMO) and
Green for Growth Fund (GGF) have agreed to provide a further €40m in B
Loans to the project, which will help boost Serbia’s renewable energy
production and improve the energy mix and electricity supply for homes
and businesses in the northern province of Vojvodina. The project will
also help Serbia meet its obligations under the Energy Community Treaty
to have 27 percent of energy consumption from renewable sources by 2020.
“IFC’s strong involvement and backing demonstrates the strength of the
project, and also Serbia’s ability and willingness to attract large investments
in renewable energy,” said Ludo Vandervelden, General Manager of Elicio.
“The recent amendments to the renewable energy laws paved the way for
us to reach this important milestone and finally start construction, after
years of ground-breaking development work.”
With 70 per cent of its electricity generation stemming from older coal-fired
plants, Serbia is among the largest greenhouse gas emitters per capita
in Europe with an unused renewable energy capacity. The project will help
diversify Serbia’s aged and highly pollutant generation mix, reduce an
estimated 123,644 tons of greenhouse emissions per year, and create between
70 and 100 jobs by 2018.
“The Alibunar wind farm is the largest wind farm project financed in Serbia
up to date. IFC’s support for renewable energy is an important part of
our work to address climate change and improve access to infrastructure,”
said Wiebke Schloemer, IFC’s Head of Infrastructure in Europe, the Middle
East, and North Africa. “The project also highlights IFC’s creating markets
strategy, paving the way for other renewable energy projects looking for
long-term financing from international or regional financial institutions.
It is also a result of IFC’s work with the government of Serbia to improve
relevant bylaws and the model power purchase agreement.”
The project’s wind turbine provider will be Senvion, a U.S. private equity-owned
wind manufacturer that will also be the project’s operation and maintenance
contractor. As well as its role as B Loan lender, Unicredit Serbia will
act as account bank, VAT lender and interest hedging provider (alongside
IFC). Allen & Overy and Karanovic & Nikolic acted as Lenders Legal
Advisor, and DNV GL acted as Lenders Technical Advisor. Elicio was advised
by White & Case and Karanovic & Nikolic.
The World Bank Group announced a commitment to increase climate-related
investments by 28 percent by 2020 following its 2015 Annual Meetings, roughly
doubling IFC's climate investments over the next five years.
Elicio NV is a Belgian renewable energy producer operating internationally.
It is a subsidiary of the Nethys Group, a Belgium-based energy and telecommunications
group. In 2014, the company Elicio NV acquired selected wind energy projects
of the company Electrawinds which were developed from 1998. Elicio generates
today its power from windturbes, high technological installations which
are developed and constructed in a spirit of good neighborliness. Elicio
actively operates within all aspects of renewable energy by successfully
developing, engineering, constructing and running its projects in-house
for 20 years. In doing so, Elicio also exports its expertise, acquired
in its home markets Belgium & France, to play a key role in the energy
transition of new markets, such as Serbia and Kenya. As such, Elicio wants
to make a positive contribution towards a better living environment.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development
institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working
with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise,
and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas
of the world. In FY17, we delivered a record $19.3 billion in long-term
financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private
sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information,