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Bulgaria's NEK WIN EIB support for 1.6 GW of pumped storage

The European Investment Bank (EIB) will assist Bulgaria’s national electricity company in its preparation to build two 800MW pumped-storage hydropower plants (PSHPP) in the southwestern part of the country by providing advisory support for the projects.

EIB Advisory will examine the technical feasibility and economic viability of the two projects, while also assessing their benefits and risks, thereby allowing Natsionalna Elektricheska Kompania EAD (NEK) to make informed decisions with regard to the development process.

The new PSHPPs will be built at hydropower cascade dams and reservoirs near the towns of Batak and Dospat. The cost of each is estimated at about EUR 900 million (USD 975m). They are both planned for completion by 2032 and are part of the Ten-Year Network Development Plan (TYNDP) 2024 of the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E).

According to EIB Vice-President Kyriacos Kakouris, the two projects “can significantly impact Bulgaria’s energy mix and enhance the stability of its power grid while reinforcing the overall European energy grid infrastructure.”

At present, NEK operates 31 hydropower and pumped-storage plants with a total installed generating capacity of 2,739 MW and a pumping capacity of 932 MW.


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