Mayor Igor Radojicic, RS Government prime minister, Mrs Zeljka Cvijanovic, and IEE CEO, Mr Borko Torbica, officially opened „Eko toplane“, a new district heating plant in Banja Luka. The ceremony was attended by many local and regional officials and guests.
Mayor Radojicic said that on March 15, 2017 he had proposed to the City of Banja Luka Assembly delegates to start with the implementation of this project. At that moment, it seemed quite unrealistic to solve the district heating issue in only one season.
- Today the problem has been solved. First of all, citizens of Banja Luka who are connected to the system can be assured that the service will be reliable. Secondly, we have a financially sustainable system. Instead of the old facility, which made additional losses in the amount of 20 million BAM every year, now we have a facility that should be profitable and ensure further investments in system modernization. At the same time, it should make profit to its owners, the City of Banja Luka and IEE company, Radojicic said.
According to mayor Radojicic, this is not just ordinary ten wood-fuelled boilers.
- We`ve got modern technology, a genuinely innovative model not only in terms of automatization and management, but legally and technically too, said mayor Radojicic.
He thanked to all project participants.
- Hard work and serious efforts put by the staff of the City of Banja Luka, RS Government, IEE and others. We proved that it was possible to solve the biggest and long-standing public service delivery issue in Banja Luka, mayor concluded.
Ian Brown, Head of EBRD Office in Bosnia and Herzegovina, said that EBRD financially supported the City of Banja Luka share in the construction of the new district heating facility.
- This is our first collaborative project and EBRD is proud of it. We have already started discussions about implementation of other communal infrastructure projects, Brown said.
The newly constructed bio-mass fuelled facility is a PPP project, implemented by the City of Banja Luka and IEE company. Its goal is to establish a good quality, sustainable and profitable heat energy production and distribution system in compliance with EU regulations.