Economic Forum: A Billion Euro from the EIB

The economy will be supplied with a billion euro by the European Investment Bank. Proper agreements have been signed in Krynica by Energa and the government.

The amount of EUR 250 million from the issue of hybrid bonds to the European Investment Bank will be used by Energa to develop and modernise the network. “Most of the lines in our area need to be restored. The objective is to improve the network’s quality, generate lower transmission losses and reinforce the network so that it is resistant to the violent storms that we have recently experienced and that made us restore 100 km of the lines,” explained Daniel Obajtek, President of Energa.

“It is necessary to invest in distribution because this part of the business is the most profitable to us. Until now, we have already invested PLN 1 billion a year. Now the outlays in this area will be doubled. The business will be even more profitable if we do not have to constantly fight against storms and wind,” added the Head of Energa.

The representatives of Energa did not want to disclose detailed conditions of the issue of the hybrid bonds. The only known condition is that they will be repaid in two instalments of EUR 125 million each, after 16 and 20 years, respectively and that they can be redeemed early, after 6 and 10 years.

“This way we will have time to get a multiple return on investment,” believes Obajtek.

Energa is going to apply for the research and development funds from the EIB by taking part in competitions. The bank has signed an agreement for another EUR 750 million with the Polish government. “In cooperation with the Gdańsk University of Technology, we have developed a research and development centre that is to focus on works on projects from three areas. We want to spend PLN 40 million a year to improve the network’s innovativeness, to develop a Polish battery being a household energy storage or a replaceable charger for electric cars, as well as to develop the wind turbine technology,” listed Obajtek in an interview for “Rzeczpospolita”.

The company will try to commercialise the project in all three areas, which can be achieved in the group or together with a business partner. The concern will not announce any further tender procedures to install the so-called smart meters.

“800 smart meters installed so far gives us the position of the market leader anyway. However, we believe that it is necessary to keep doing research work on the smart meter. It must meet the needs of development of the electromobility sector. A truly smart meter should assign the cost of energy purchase to the proper person even if the user of the car is charging a battery from another car,” he explained.

As Deputy Minister of Development Witold Słowik stated, the agreement made with the EIB is 15th as part of the so-called ‘big window’ with the means of the European Fund for Strategic Investments. “As for the approved projects, we are in the 4th position, and in terms of the amount of the financing granted – 5th,” specified Słowik. And the Minister of Energy, Krzysztof Tchórzewski, said that the funds from the EIB and the investments developed with them would contribute to decreasing the emissivity of the economy.