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EBRD Studies Loan for Romanian Wind Farm Sought by ERG, Lukoil

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Sept. 20 (Bloomberg) -- The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development is considering a loan for a Romanian wind farm being bought by a joint venture between Italy’s ERG SpA and Russia’s OAO Lukoil.

The EBRD, based in London, is in discussions with Lukerg Renew GmbH to provide debt for the 84-megawatt facility in Tulcea, Louis Borgo, a senior banker in EBRD’s power and energy utilities team, said today by e-mail. Confidentiality agreements prevented him giving further details, he said.

Romania is attracting wind investors because of its clean energy incentive program and location along the Black Sea, where average wind speeds are about 25.2 kilometers per hour (15.7 miles per hour).

Italy’s Enel Green Power SpA said in June it planned to double its Romanian wind power to 500 megawatts in four years, and Austria’s Verbund AG this month said it will spend about 340 million euros ($440 million) on wind there through 2016.

“We believe in the Romanian renewable regime and we are pursuing a number of renewable projects in the country, in wind, solar and biomass, which are at various stages in our approval cycle,” Borgo said.

Lukerg Renew is “in the course of acquiring” the wind farm, which is ready to build in Dorobantu, Topolog and Casimcea. It expects to complete the deal in October, according to a statement on the EBRD website. EBRD would lend on a limited recourse basis, where the creditor has limited claims on the debt if there’s a default.

Enel Green last month started operations at its 48-megawatt Moldova Noua wind farm in Romania’s Banat region. That project along with Enel’s Corugea wind farm also in Romania won 112 million euros of funding from the Danish export credit agency, Eksport Kredit Fonden.

Verbund, based in Vienna, this month commissioned its 100-megawatt Casimcea I wind farm near Romania’s Black Sea coast and has 100 megawatts more under construction.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sally Bakewell in London at sbakewell1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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