ECONOMY

Albania extends power-buying plans to face shortages

TIRANA (SeeNews) – Power-hungry Albania said yesterday it would buy 219,600 megawatt-hours (MWh) of electricity in an effort to overcome the current electricity shortages in the country that are causing power cuts of up to 18 hours a day. The electricity will be imported from Bulgaria’s export monopoly NETC and Romania’s Energy Holding, the government said in a statement. Power utility KESH will buy through public procurement 175,680 MWh of electricity for 6.9 million euros ($8.3 million) from Bucharest-based Energy Holding and 43,920 MWh of electricity for 1.6 million euros from Bulgarian NETC, the Cabinet said. KESH introduced on Tuesday power cuts of up to 12 hours a day in the towns and up to 18 hours a day in some villages. Albania’s outdated electricity units cannot produce enough electricity to meet domestic demand. KESH offsets electricity shortages mainly through imports but insufficient interest shown by foreign suppliers has prevented it from contracting enough electricity to meet consumption until the end of the year. KESH held an electricity tender on October 12 intending to buy 395 GWh of electricity to meet demand by the end of the year. The power utility has not yet announced the results of the tender.