A 40 turbine project at Tes in Hungary is the first wind station likely to be completed in the ambitious eastern Europe portfolio of German wind developer Utec-Thomsen. Although active in Poland, the Czech Republic and Croatiaas well as Germany, Hungary looks to be the most promising market. "From 2003, we hope to install 50-100 MW yearly there," says Norbert Müller of Utec-Thomsen Hungary, based in Veszprem since 2001. The company has an agreement with the Tes authorities to promote local wind development and anticipates obtaining a permit for 40 turbines within 12 months so that construction can start at the end of 2003. Utec-Thomsen Hungary has already chosen 1.5 MW machines, with the order divided equally between Nordex and NEG Micon. Talks are underway about grid connection with the local utility Edasz (in which German energy giant E.on has a 55% stake) and the state-owned electricity company MVM. Utec-Thomsen is also co-operating with local wind developer I-Quadrat Hungaria. "Our calculations for the project are based on a purchase price for the wind power of EUR 0.065/kWh," says Müller. But he anticipates that a renewable energy law, passed early this year and to come into force in 2003, will introduce a mandate for use of green power, represented by renewable energy credits, or green certificates. Sales of credits will bring in revenue in addition to sales of the physical electricity. "Hungary is moving fast and industriously towards joining the EU. We are confident the certificates system will be put in place. In the meantime, we have plenty to be getting on with," he says.
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