Joint venture plans to build series of wind projects

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Croatian developer Valalta is teaming up with German's Wallenborn Projektentwicklung in a 50:50 joint venture to build a series of wind projects in Croatia. The first will be Valalta's planned EUR 55 million 42 MW Vratarusa wind plant of 14 turbines near Senj in the region of Rijeka, says the company's Ivan Hrelja. A public consultation on the project's environmental impact is underway and construction work is planned to start in August 2008, he adds. Croatia's Fund for Energy Efficiency is contributing EUR 233,000 ($328,296) towards the project. The new joint venture also hopes to develop an 80 MW wind project, comprising 34 turbines, in Cicarija in the Istra region near the border with Slovenia, intending to start work on the EUR 80 million project by the end of next year. Valalta has signed an agreement with the local municipality, Lanisce, giving the authority the right to 2% of the plant's annual production and electricity sales from the Cicarija plant as "ecological compensation." Another EUR 80 million wind power plant is planned at Mazin in the municipality of Gracac in Lika County. Hrelja says around 75% of the equipment needed for the wind plants will be manufactured in Croatia, but the turbines will come from Danish manufacturer Vestas. As well as Germany and Croatia, Wallenborn is also active in Hungary, Poland and Syria.

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