Vestas supplies 99 MW to Svilaja wind farm

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Danish turbine supplier Vestas is supplying 33, 3 MW turbines for a EUR 89 million wind farm being developed across two sites by Croatian-German company Jura Energija on the Svilaja mountain. With planning permission already granted, construction work is expected to start this spring. Seventeen of the turbines will go up in Crotia's Split-Dalmatia district while 16 will be installed in the neighbouring district of Sibenik-Knin. Around 70% of the project costs are being covered by a loan from foreign banks. The Svilaja wind farm will be connected to the distribution network operated by Croatian power utility Hrvatska Elektroprivreda. The purchase price for the electricity generated, stipulated under Croatia's renewable energy law, is currently EUR 0.072/kWh, payable for a 12-year period. The rate is linked to the retail price index. A review of the fixed price system is planned for 2010. Upon completion, Svilaja will boost Croatia's wind capacity to almost 83 MW, up from just 16.8 MW from two projects today. With investors attracted by the 12-year fixed power purchase price plus tax breaks, including exemption from paying an energy annuity to local authorities, Croatia is enjoying a mini wind rush. A further 40 projects, with a combined capacity of 600 MW, are under development in the country. About 100 locations have been earmarked for wind farm construction for a total potential of 1300 MW. Croatia's energy development strategy document expects 300 MW of new renewable energy power capacity to be built by 2010, supplying 4.5% of the country's electricity, up from just 0.6% in 2002. Jura Energija, based in Seget-Vranjica, is a subsidiary of German firm Jura Energie. Besides Germany and Croatia, the company is planning to build wind projects in Greece.

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