TIRANA, Dec. 2 – On Monday, the Transmission System and Market Operator Company in Kosovo and Transmission System Operator of Albania (TSO), signed an agreement establishing a Kosovo-Albania Power System Regulatory Block (CA Block). According to a KOSST statement, the regulatory block consisting of two regulatory areas (KOSTT and OST) aims to make the operation of two power systems easier both technically and economically. Moreover, this will enable easier operation and balancing of both systems, reducing costs and exchanging system reserves. The agreement is expected to enter into force in April 2020.
“The agreement was signed, to the knowledge of ENTSO-E, with the consent of the two national energy regulators, ‘Energy Regulatory Office’ in Kosovo and Energy Regulatory Authority in Albania. This agreement is a precondition for the independent operation of KOSTT and is expected to enter into force in April 2020, after the signing and commencement of implementation of the new Connection Agreement between KOSTT and ENTSO-E,” reads the KOSTT statement. The agreement is also in line with the new requirements of the ENTSO-E Network Code aimed at promoting the cooperation of the TSOs (Transmission System Operators) with the function to enable the safe operation of the Energy Systems and the minimization of operational costs.
The Chief Executive Officer of KOSTT, Ilir Shala, announced that this agreement signifies the beginning of “the first actual cooperation on the exchange of reserves within the Kosovo-Albania markets, with the aim to implement the Joint Energy Exchange (APEX), which will enable other trading parties to become part of the soon-to-be-established stock exchange.” He also highlighted the importance that the Regulatory Block will have on the existing Serbian Block, which KOSTT has so far been a part of. “This is a historic agreement for Kosovo and KOSTT, since, until now, we as KOSTT have been within the Serbian Regulatory Area, respectively within the regulatory block of the SMN which includes Serbia, Montenegro, and North Macedonia. Now, with the signing of the agreement with the OST, starting its implementation in April 2020, we are definitely breaking away from the umbrella of the Serbian Regulatory Area and becoming part of the Regulatory Block with the Albanian OST,” Shala added. Moreover, TSO’s general manager, Skerdi Drenova, said that this “guarantees the security of operation for both Power Systems and creates favorable conditions for the optimal utilization of resources within the Block”.
However, this was not received well in Belgrade, where the head of the office for Kosovo in the Serbian Government, Marko Djuric, said, “Greater Energy Albania exists only in the chauvinistic dreams of a few politicians in Pristina,” while calling for the international community to block the implementation of the agreement signed in Tirana. He stated that Serbia is the owner and constructor of the power network in Kosovo, while “the block cannot be implemented in practice and it must be stopped by the international community before it leads to consequences for the regional energy, even political stability, and seals the future of the dialogue .
Kosovo and Serbia signed an agreement during talks mediated by the European Union, according to which KOSTT and the Serbian System Operator (EMS) were to start functioning as two independent regulatory areas in accordance with the requirements of the European Network of System Operators of the Electricity Transmission (ENTSO-E). However, this has not been implemented yet, similar to many other agreements aiming to improve the relations between the two countries.