The seller, Metropoliya Group, is to continue technical support of the projects until they enter commercial operation next year, VR Capital said Thursday. In addition, VR’s Elementum Energy Ukraine is building a 100 MW wind farm in a different part of the Odesa region. Elementum owns 28 solar stations with a total capacity of 536 MW.
French and Italian railroad station operators are among the eight companies that are seriously interested in running Ukrainian rail stations on a concession basis, Alexander Pertsovsky, director of Ukrzaliznytsia’s ‘Passenger Company,’ tells the Center for Transportation Strategies. Candidate stations include: Kyiv, Chop, Dnipro, Kharkiv, Mykolaiv and Vinnytsia.
Hotel Lviv, Grand Hotel Lviv and Gagarinn Hotel in Odesa’s Arcadia district have been granted premises permits, a first step toward winning a casino license, reports Deadlinenews, a Scottish site. Without citing sources, the news site says that Ukraine’s new Gambling and Lotteries Regulation Commission has issued a total of 11 permits to hotels around the country.
In a ray of hope for Ukraine’s beleaguered wind power sector, DTEK Renewables and Denmark’s Vestas have signed a joint venture agreement to build 126 MW of wind power capacity in Mykolaiv. To pay for the 21 towers and turbines, DTEK will draw on its five-year €325 million green bond issued in 2019. Over the last year, the Zelenskiy Administration’s green tariff cuts and delays in payments to producers have frozen many renewable projects.
Lufthansa launches flights between Lviv and Frankfurt am Main on April 30. Germany’s largest airline already flies between Lviv and Munich. Ryanair flies from Lviv to Memmingen and to Weeze. Wizz Air flies from Lviv to Berlin Brandenburg and to Dortmund.
Rising on the Tylihul estuary, 80 km southwest of Mykolaiv city, the DTEK/Vestas turbines will be the tallest post-Independence structures in Ukraine. The blades will measure 162 meters from tip to tip, about 60% longer than the standard football field. If the 6 MW turbine hub is mounted atop a 100-meter tall tower, each windmill would rise 181 meters in the air. By contrast, the tallest building in Ukraine, Klovskii Descent 7A, rises 168 meters. The Duga radar array near Chornobyl rises 150 meters. Only the Kyiv TV Tower is taller — 385 meters.
The Tiligulska wind power project is designed to be scaled up to 564 MW. But, for this to happen Maris Kunitskis, CEO of DTEK Renewables, says: “We expect that the crisis related to non-payments for the renewable energy sector will be resolved soon, and the state policy regarding renewable energy will become understandable and predictable.”
With wind and solar executives desperately renegotiating bank loans and talking to lawyers about international arbitration, the most visible sign of Ukraine’s crisis came in January when Norway’s Aker decided, after six months of due diligence, not to go ahead with a planned purchase of NBT. Aker reportedly cited “Ukraine exposure” as its reason for not going through with the deal to buy control of NBT, which had plans for 1 G of wind power plants southern Ukraine.
By contrast, Europe installed 14.7 GW of new wind capacity last year. Wind farm generation covered 16.4% of electricity consumption in Europe, reports WindEurope.
Despite lower rates and uncertainty over payments, several wind projects are advancing in Ukraine:
Two US-originated companies, VR Capital Group’s Elementum Energy and Peter Gish’s Ukraine Power Resources plan to inaugurate this spring a 40 MW wind farm in Starokozache, on the Dnister estuary, 75 km west of Odesa.
Turkey’s Atlas Global Energy plans to build a 16 turbine, 60 MW wind farm in a Carpathian mountain valley near the Beskidy railroad tunnel, reports Daily Lviv. The tracks through the newly rebuilt, 1.8 km tunnel are electrified. The wind power plant is to connect to an Ukrzaliznytsia substation.
France’s Eurocape New Energy has commissioned a 98 MW wind farm in the Priazovsky district of Zaporizhia. The plant, Eurocape 1, has 27 GE tubines, each with a capacity of 3.6 MW. Originally planned to be Europe’s largest on shore wind project, with a capacity of 600 MW, the Eurocape project has largely frozen further expansion due to the lowered electricity rates and the unpaid power bills.
Hong Kong’s Hiro Asia Investments is paying for the construction of a 25-turbine, 75 MW wind power plant that is to guarantee electricity for Yuzhne, Ukraine’s largest port. China is Ukraine’s largest trading partner. The €65 million project is nearing completion, reports Southern Okrug news site. The power is almost 10 times more than the city’s peak winter consumption, Yuzhne mayor Vladimir Novatsky, writes on Facebook.
Ukrposhta, the national postal operator, starts this week a partnership with OLX, one of Ukraine’s largest online market places. Last year, Dutch-domiciled OLX nearly doubled its deliveries in Ukraine, to 300,000 a month. Ukrposhta now guarantees 3-day delivery of OLX packages to anywhere in Ukraine. Ihor Smelyansky, director general of Ukrposhta says: “We are opening access to an audience of 10 million Ukrainians in the most remote corners of the country.”
Non-cash payments grew last year to 55%, more than double the level of 25% recorded in 2014, reports the European Business Association. The total volume of e-money transactions increased by 15% last year, The number ‘e-wallets’ increased by 7%, to to 79 million.
Offering a boost to residential construction, the first two mortgages were signed yesterday under a new state program “Affordable Mortgage at 7%.” The 20-year mortgages are reserved for apartments or house that are under six years old. The maximum value of the residence is $90,000, the maximum loan size is $71,500, the down payment is 15% and the fixed rate is 7%.
“We will work to ensure that housing loans at 7% are truly accessible to all in Ukraine,” President Zelenskiy vowed at the mortgage signing ceremony. Seven banks are participating in the program: PrivatBank, Oschadbank, Ukrgasbank, Globus Bank, OTP Bank, Megabank, Kredobank. This week, state-owned Oschadbank opens 12 Oschad Home mortgage centers in 10 regions.