The European Investment Bank (EIB) on Thursday signed a €24 million financing agreement with the Greek Terna Energy Group to help fund the development, construction and operation of two wind farms on Mount Vermio in northern Greece, according to a statement from the bank.
"The loan is the latest operation in Greece backed under the EU budget guarantee of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the financial instrument of the Investment Plan for Europe," the EIB said.
This is the second such agreement with Terna following one last July to finance wind farms in the Viotia region of central Greece, it added.
The two farms will have a combined operating capacity of 44.4 megawatts (MW), divided between Eressou Ipsoma-Fourka (36 MW) and Lefkes-Kerasia (8.4MW).
Combined, they will host 22 wind turbines installed on complex high altitude terrain, exceeding 1.4 km, and will be connected to the transmission grid via a new medium voltage/high voltage substation with respectively 8.5 km and 16 km of medium voltage underground cable.
"Alpha Bank acted as co-lender providing an equivalent amount of long-term debt next to a medium-term VAT facility," the EIB added.
The loan is "a testament to the continued EIB support to the Greek electricity sector in general and the promotion of the renewable energy sources, in line with EU policies, in particular," it noted.
Jonathan Taylor, EIB vice president responsible for lending in Greece, said the bank was committed to financing green energy projects across the EU and the EFSI had enabled them to do even more.
"This project is precisely the kind of operation the Investment Plan for Europe was designed to support," he said.
European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs Pierre Moscovici praised the deal, calling it "a concrete example of how the Juncker Plan is helping to modernize Greece's energy infrastructure, supporting growth and job creation along the way".
In early June, the Greek Regulatory Authority for Energy awarded seven wind projects with a total capacity of 171 MW in the country's first onshore wind auction.
Greece had announced plans in May to auction 2.6 gigawatts (GW) of renewable energy capacity by 2020, in addition to the 2.6 GW already installed in the country.
By Hale Turkes