Kosovo government has signed an agreement with US-based ContourGlobal for the construction of the €1bn ($1.17bn) Kosova e Re coal-fired power plant in the country to meet the increasing power demand.

The commercial agreement between the Kosovo government and ContourGlobal for the power plant is planned to be signed in near future.

The new coal-fired power plant is claimed to be first major energy project in the Balkan country in more than two decades.

Intended to ensure energy independence for the people of Kosovo, the new power plant will replace the 40-year-old Kosovo A power plant.

Claimed to be the most single-point source of pollution in Europe, the 650MW Kosovo A power plant is planned to be retired by the end of 2017.

Construction of the new project is scheduled to commence next year with planned commissioning in 2023.

The Kosova e Re power plant will feature a single supercritical block, with a minimum efficiency of 40%.

The Kosovo government said that the facility will also comprise a co-generation component for central heating with greater capacities for expansion of the heating network for the cities of Prishtina, Obiliq, Drenas and Fushe Kosova.

Additionally, the new power plant will be built with the latest technology to help reduce of greenhouse gas emissions.

The government said: “The achievement of the agreement is the result of many years of work of the governments of Kosovo, of many people, many experts who, in difficult conditions, managed to secure a secure energy future for the country and at the same time a contract that guarantees maximum achievement for the institutions and the people of Kosovo.”

ContourGlobal has a signed a memorandum of understanding with the Kosovo government in December 2015 for the financing of the proposed Kosova e Re power plant.

Image: Representatives of ContourGlobal and Kosova Government. Photo: courtesy of The Republic of Kosovo/The Office of the Prime Minister.