New Green Economy Financing Facility Launched in Montenegro to Support Green Investments
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is launching a new Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF) in Montenegro that will provide loans to households for energy efficiency improvements. The programme will benefit from over €27 million in incentives to end borrowers provided by the European Union through the Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF). Technical assistance to support the preparation, implementation and monitoring of the programme is supported by over €5 million in grants, provided by the government of the Republic of Austria, and additional €2 million by the WBIF bilateral donors, including the European Union contribution through the Instrument of Pre-accession Assistance (IPA).
Crnogorska Komercijalna Banka (CKB), member of OTP Group, has signed up as the first partner financial institution in the country with a credit line of €2 million for on-lending to homeowners. The investments will help to make households more energy efficient, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve living standards.
The financing is part of a larger €135 million GEFF programme for the Western Balkans. GEFF is implemented under the umbrella of the WBIF project ’The Regional Energy Efficiency Programme for the Western Balkans (REEP Plus)’, funded by the EU and delivered in partnership with the Energy Community Secretariat. The REEP Plus is identified in the European Commission's Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans as one of the Flagship projects within the "Renovation Wave" under the Investment window "Clean Energy". These projects contribute significantly to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and improve the living standards and health of citizens.
Homeowners who benefit from financing under the programme will also be eligible to apply for an EU grant for up to 20% of their investment. Households installing energy efficiency solutions such as double-glazed windows or new boilers can also access financing under the programme. Households can select the technologies they wish to invest in by using the Technology Selector, an on-line catalogue of pre-approved energy-efficient equipment available on the Montenegrin market. The catalogue includes items such as thermal insulation, double-glazed windows, high-efficiency boilers, heat pumps, solar collectors/solar water heaters and photovoltaic systems.
To date, around 7,000 households in the Western Balkans have improved their energy efficiency thanks to GEFF with investments in projects that contributed to a reduction of over 10,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year, equivalent to removing 6,000 cars from the street.
Mr Herman Spitz, Head of Cooperation Section, EU Delegation Montenegro, said: “Increasing energy efficiency is at the core of EU’s Energy Union: it enhances energy security while decreasing CO2 emissions, boosts innovation and creates jobs in the energy sector. Montenegro is joining this important effort and the EU is supporting the country in return. We have dedicated €30 million to support energy efficiency investments in the Western Balkans. EU’s support, channelled through the EBRD’s Green Economy Facility, will help Montenegrin citizens improve energy efficiency of their homes.”
Mr Jaap Sprey, EBRD Head of Montenegro, said: “We are pleased that Montenegro has joined the GEFF family and that Montenegrin citizens will now have access to well-structured finance and incentive grants for investments that will contribute to improving the energy efficiency of their homes. Strengthening green economy with investments in renewables and energy efficiency is one of key priorities of the EBRD in Montenegro and we are happy that together with the EU, Austria and other donors we are contributing to building a greener future in the country”.
Mr Pál Kovács, CEO of CKB, said: “We are delighted to be the first bank in Montenegro to join the GEFF programme and to foster green lending in the country. With the EBRD as partner we will support our clients with incentivised credit lines for energy efficiency investments in their homes to make them more cost-efficient and comfortable”.
More about the Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF)
More about the WBIF Project ’The Regional Energy Efficiency Programme for the Western Balkans (REEP Plus)’
More about the WBIF Activities in Montenegro