Montenegro's EPCG gets loan from Germany's KfW for hydro plant overhaul

SARAJEVO (Reuters) - Montenegro power utility EPCG EPCG.MOT signed a 33 million euro ($36.5 million) loan deal with German state-owned development bank KfW [KFW.UL] on Wednesday to help fund the overhaul of three turbines at its 307 megawatt (MW) Perucica hydro power plant.

The deal is a part of the KfW’s ongoing 80-million-euro Greening Public Infrastructure program for Montenegro, EPCG said in a statement.

The overhaul of EPCG’s oldest hydro power plant, aimed at extending its lifespan and boosting output and reliability, is due to commence next year, it said.

Part the loan will go toward project documentation for the construction of a 58.5 MW turbine at the plant, EPCG said.

EPCG operates 649 MW of installed hydro power capacity and 225 MW of coal-fired power generation capacity.

It plans to add new wind and solar capacity to help meet EU renewable energy targets and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

EPCG shareholders last month approved a plan to increase the government's stake in EPCG to 85.4% from 76.9%, after Italy's biggest regional utility A2A A2.MI, which currently holds a 11.9% stake, decided to sell out of EPCG.

Reporting by Maja Zuvela; editing by Jason Neely