Montenegro to shortlist Powerchina, Skoda Praha, Slovak tie-in in thermal power tender - report

By bne IntelliNews December 5, 2013

Montenegro will most likely shortlist only three or four out of the overall nine bidders for the next stage of the tender for a second unit at its sole thermal power plant TE Pljevlja, daily Vijesti reported, quoting unofficial information.

Among the shortlisted will probably be Powerchina’s Hubei Electric Power Survey & Design Institute, Czech company Skoda Praha and a Slovak consortium (Istroenergo Group Slovakia-SES Tlmace), while the offer of Russia's Rusatom Overseas was reportedly turned down as uncompleted.

The unofficial information indicates that another one of the overall five Chinese firms and consortia which applied could also find a place in the shortlist, expected to be published at mid-December.

According to the report, Powerchina has offered to build a 220 MW unit for EUR 269mn, Skoda Praha proposed to build 250 MW for EUR 329mn, while Istroenergo's bid is for 225 MW worth EUR 303mn.

Vijesti said that state-controlled power producer EPCG, which is in charge with the project, has explained it is still considering the technical and financial parts of the bids.

Reportedly, the Polish consortium led by holding group POL-MOT and including as well Alstom and Foster Wheeler will most like drop from the second tender stage as it offer is considered too costly - they offered to build a 300 MW unit for EUR 520mn.

Offers were also filed by China Gezhouba Group International Engineering Company (CGGC), TBEA Shenyang Transformer Group (also from China), China National Electric Engineering (CNEEC) and China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC).

Montenegro plans to add a second 220-300 MW unit to TE Pljevlja, which has one existing unit of 210 MW. The new unit must have a net electricity efficiency of no less than 38%, EPCG has said.

According to the plan, the project will be implemented via an intragovernment agreement as the investor will be obliged to secure certain credit funding, or propose an option for joint investment becoming both industrial and financial partner of EPCG, possibly as a shareholder or similar.

EPCG said that depending on the bids, Montenegro would consider the possibility to draft a special law that would support the investment and speed up the project. It is willing to also consider the merger of TE Pljevlja and the adjacent mining firm Rudnik Uglja.

TE Pljevlja's existing unit generates around a half of the electricity produced in Montenegro and the country now imports around 30% of the power it consumes. Therefore, the construction of the new facility would provide for the energy independence of the Adriatic state, eliminate the current electricity deficit and improve the stability of the energy system.

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