The government approved on Tuesday the Emergency Ordinance under which the Oltenia Energy Complex receives 1.2 billion lei in state aid for the purchase of the greenhouse gas emission certificates assigned to 2019, the Ministry of Energy said in a release on Wednesday.On December 30, 2019 the government approved a memorandum setting out the plan of measures for the purchase of greenhouse gas emission certificates, titled "Authorizing the Ministry of Public Finance to give its approval in principle for the Oltenia Energy Complex potentially taking out a Treasury loan worth 1,200 million lei in the form of a rescue aid, after completing the legal steps regarding state aid and after obtaining the European Commission's authorization."
Also back then the government approved the referral of the pre-notification documents and the notification of the European Commission of the rescue aid proposed for the Oltenia Energy Complex; within 6 months from the grant of the loan, the Oltenia Energy Complex is to either repay it, or present a Restructuring program for the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Business Environment to refer to the European Commission in order to obtain restructuring state aid.
Based on the memorandum, on January 16, 2020 the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Business Environment sent the Competition Council the documentation for the European Commission's pre-notification of Romania's proposal to grant the Oltenia Energy Complex rescue aid.
"The grant of the state aid will allow the company to continue its activity along with the implementation of an ambitious decarbonisation and restructuring program that will lead to the diversification of its energy mix, by implementing the transitions from coal to gas and renewables," the release said.
According to the undertaken commitments, the Oltenia Energy Complex shall have to consider the following major investments: the construction of three solar parks with a total installed capacity of about 300 MW on the site of the closed-down slag and ash dumps of the Rovinari, Turceni and Isalnita power plants; the construction of a new 200 MW gas-powered cogeneration block at the Craiova Power Plant, the construction of a 400 MW gas-powered block at the Turceni Power Plant, as well as the construction of two 400 MW gas-powered blocks at the Isalnita Power Plant, in parallel with increasing the efficiency of its exploitation and production activities.