SOFIA (Bulgaria), December 16 (SeeNews) - Bulgaria may fail to attract over 1.0 billion levs ($744.8 million/511.2 million euro) in foreign direct investments in the next five years in renewable energy projects if a planned temporary suspension on such projects in the country goes into force, a lobby group said on Wednesday.
Foreign investors who want to build capacities will most probably withdraw as there is no clear legislative framework for the development of the sector, the newly set up Bulgarian Photovoltaic Association said in a statement.
Environment Minister Nona Karadzhova said last week the government was considering a temporary suspension of the licensing of renewable energy projects until the country adopts a strategy on atlernative energy. Investors have declared to build thousands of megawatts of capacities so far which could cause a collapse of the grid.
The first to be directly affected by the proposed ban will be the local developers. Bulgaria will also fail to produce goods and services worth over 350 million euro for the industry and thousandds of jobs will not open.
"Presently all projects for [the production of electricity] from renewable energy resources are frozen and the business is in a wake coma. All enterpreneurs will suffer serious financial losses and many of them will file for bankruptcy," the lobby group said and urged the goverment to come up with a clear vision for the sector if it wants to keep the trust of foreign investors.
The development of renewable energy resources in Bulgaria has gained momentum since the country joined the European Union in 2007, and is expected to intensify further. Bulgaria must cover 16% of its gross energy consumption with electricity generated from renewables by 2020 to meet the requirements of the bloc.
Bulgaria has just 3.0 MW of solar energy capacities and 330 MW of installed wind farms. Electricity generated from renewable resources, mostly water, currently cover less than 10% of Bulgaria's gross electricity consumption.
(1 euro = 1.95583 Bulgarian levs)