EIB signs EUR 24 mn for wind farms in Northern Greece
This project is precisely the kind of operation the Investment Plan for Europe was designed to support.
The EIB has signed an EUR 24 million financing agreement with the Greek Terna Energy Group to help fund the development, construction and operation of two wind farms on Mount Vermio in northern Greece. Alpha Bank acted as co-lender providing an equivalent amount of long-term debt next to a medium-term VAT facility. The EIB's loan is backed by the EU budget guarantee of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the financial instrument of the Investment Plan for Europe. This is the second such agreement with Terna following one last July to finance wind farms in the Viotia region.
"As promised last year, we have followed developments in the Greek energy sector and remain ready to step in to finance sound projects that meet our criteria and respond to EU energy policies," commented Jonathan Taylor, EIB Vice-President responsible for lending in Greece. "The Bank is particularly committed to finance green energy projects across the Union and the EFSI has enabled us to do even more. This project is precisely the kind of operation the Investment Plan for Europe was designed to support."
Pierre Moscovici, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs, said: "After Greece exits its stability support programme on 20 August, the country will stand on its own two feet – but the European Commission will continue to stand by its side, including financially. Today's announcement is a concrete example of how the Juncker Plan is helping to modernize Greece's energy infrastructure, supporting growth and job creation along the way."
The two wind farms will have a combined operating capacity of 44.4 MW, divided between Eressou Ipsoma-Fourka (operating capacity 36MW) and Lefkes-Kerasia (operating capacity of 8.4MW). Combined, they will host 22 wind turbines installed on complex high altitude terrain (exceeding 1.400m), and will be connected to the transmission grid via a new MV/HV Substation and respectively 8.5 km and 16km of MV underground cable.
This is the second EFSI operation where the bank is undertaking direct project risk via a limited recourse, project finance structure. Next, to other transactions, it is a testament to the continued EIB support to the Greek electricity sector in general and the promotion of the renewable energy sources, in line with EU policies, in particular.