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Lights Out

Thanks to Drita, obviously an avid reader of The Economist, for directing me to this article on Albania's energy problems following the closure of the two Bulgarian nuclear units. The article reports that:
Last month [sali Berisha] made a joint appeal with Sergey Stanishev, his Bulgarian counterpart, for units 3 and 4 at Kozloduy to stay open (units 1 and 2 are already closed; units 5 and 6 are more modern and safer). Bulgarians argue in Brussels that Balkan countries need as much energy as the region can produce if they are to grow faster.

Andris Piebalgs, the EU energy commissioner, is not convinced. On February 1st he told Mr Berisha that instead of teaming up with the Bulgarians to demand special treatment he should do more to sort things out at home. This was not quite the pre-election response Mr Berisha had been hoping for.

I hope Commissioner Piebalgs sticks to his his guns. While it is tough for ordinary Albanians who have to live without reliable power supplies, things will not change until Albanian politicians understand that the rules are not going to be bent to accommodate them.

The International Herald Tribune published an article yesterday reporting that a contract had finally been signed for the construction of a new power plant in Vlora. The plant is scheduled to be in operation by 2010 and should supply 15% of Albania's energy needs.


Anonymous said…
It's a shame. I wonder if we'll ever be able to get rid of these hardheaded mini-Enver Hoxhas, such as Sali Berisha and company. They have lowered the dignity of the country at the point of pettiness. They try hard to make it look like the people’s interests come first and above everything. In reality, hardworking people, obligated to suffer in silence, are the ones who pay for these monster called politicians, to continue their way toward, possibly, absolute power. In Sali Berisha’ eyes, the international community should obey to the “Lek Dukagjini’s law”. What an a..hole!
Anonymous said…
I'm sorry but i have to question where the fact was taken that this 100 MW/h plant would cover 15% of Albanias energy supplies. Abania needs a total of about 2400 MW/h currently. It only prroduces half of that. This means 1200 MW/h are imported. This plant which produces only 100 MW/h will not come anywhere close to meeting 15% of the demand.
ourmanintirana said…
I assume it was in the press release that announced the contract. That was the number quoted in the AP report.
Anonymous said…
I see then. Somewhat surprising that the AP was able to get this wrong. Oh well. I also need to apologize. Reading back my post, the tone of my voice seemed rather unnecesary. Anyway if you wish to join us on a discussion about Albanias energy consumption and needs feel free to drop by at
ourmanintirana said…
Thanks. I do check on the site from time to time. Not sure I know enough about the subject to have anything to add.

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Welcome to Our Man in Tirana. I moved to Tirana, capital of Albania, in October 2005 and left in October 2007. This blog is a mix of photographs, reports, links, impressions and, undoubtedly, prejudices relating to the city and the country.

Since I am no longer in Tirana I am no longer updating this blog. However, there are over 300 posts covering this two year period and I hope that they are still of some interest.

So if you are curious about Albania or if you are planning to visit I hope this blog will be of value.