Anglo-Chinese tie-up backs €230m Serbian power plant

A UK real estate firm and a Chinese state-owned utility will build a 240MW gas-fired facility, supplying electricity to the domestic market and the Pannonian Plain.

Scarborough Group International, a real estate firm owned by UK property mogul Kevin McCabe, has teamed up with China National Electric Engineering (CNEEC) to jointly develop a new €230 million power plant in Serbia. 

The Anglo-Chinese consortium has agreed to build a 240MW gas-fired facility in the city of Loznica, in the country's West. Construction of the 120MW Phase I is due to start at the end of this year and expected to become operational by the end of 2018, once the project receives government approvals. The remaining 120MW is set to be delivered about one year later. 

China Development Bank has agreed to finance the project, while Sinosure, China’s export and credit insurance arm, could also provide support to the scheme's sponsors. 

Scarborough acquired the entire equity of the Loznica project several years ago from the Serbian government under a privatisation scheme, according to a statement. CNEEC's work on the project will involve changing the former coal-fired power plant into a natural gas facility. 

The plant, set to reduce dependency on imported electricity, is situated at the crossroads of key high voltage electrical transmission lines and is adjacent to international gas pipelines. It has the ability to both supply the domestic market and export power to other countries in South and Central Eastern Europe.