Enel OGK-5, the Italian utility’s Russian unit, has brought online a 410 MW combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) unit at Nevinnomysskaya GRES in the North Caucasus.

The unit is the first new power generation facility Enel has launched in Russia as part of an investment programme aimed at raising installed capacity as well as enhancing the operational and environmental performance of the existing fleet.

“This is an important event for us, which marks a relevant step in the fulfillment of our commitments in Russia as a strategic investor in the energy sector,” said Carlo Tamburi, the head of Enel’s international division.

“The launch of the CCGT at Nevinnomysskaya GRES will not only increase the installed capacity of our plant, but also the reliability of the North Caucasus power system.”

Construction of the CCGT unit began in November 2008 and involved a consortium of Russian and international companies led by Enel Engineering and Innovation. The unit’s efficiency is about 58 per cent, significantly higher than that for conventional gas-fired power plants due to its ‘fourth-generation’ technologies.

Investment for constructing the unit totalled about EUR400m ($580m). The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) provided a long-term loan of EUR120m, which made this the first Russian large-scale utility project to receive financing from an international institution.

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