The Slovenia Times

Alstom Allegedly Ready to Abandon TEŠ Project


TV Slovenija quoted unofficial sources as saying that 16 June is the deadline for the state to issue a guarantee for EUR 440m of a EUR 550m loan from the European Investment Bank (EIB), considered crucial for the funding of the project whose costs are said to have ballooned to EUR 1.3bn.

TEŠ and its owner, state-owned power holding HSE, said on Tuesday they were still in talks with Alstom about pushing back the 4 June deadline - Alstom said it would freeze operations if funding is not secured - as well as about reducing the costs.

TEŠ and HSE assessed that there was still a minimum chance that parliament, which failed to discuss a bill on the guarantee in second reading after the government reiterated its demand for additional cost management assurances, could pass the needed legislation at the June session.

The government meanwhile got acquainted today with a report of a special commission that scrutinised the documents of the TEŠ project. TV Slovenija reported Marjan Eberlinc, commission member and head of the Energy Chamber, as saying the documents contained many unclear argumentations and pretended ignorance.

Infrastructure and Spatial Planning Minister Zvonko Černač moreover said on a margins of a meeting with his Croatian counterpart in Otočec today that the findings of reviews suggested that some investments at TEŠ - including the latest one, which is the biggest - had not been executed in the most rational and economical way possible.

The minister, who recently said that the government was not planning to scrap the project but was merely concerned about its costs, added that it was still not clear how much the final costs of the assembly will be, which he finds unacceptable given that the project is halfway to being completed.

Černač noted that somebody would have to be held accountable for the state of affairs at some point and that those managing the project of this size should have a plan B prepared and carry on accordingly.


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