Edhem Bičakčić, a businessman and former prime minister of FBiH, is the President of the national branch of CIGRÉ (Council on Large Electric Systems). The focus of his work in electrical energy sector is currently on renewable sources and he claims that BiH has great potentials in this field.
BH K CIGRÉ was founded in 1992 in the besieged Sarajevo, without electricity, under bombs and shells. Already next year, it became full member in the Parisian CIGRÉ organization. One of the founders is Edhem Bičakčić, who found motivation in the besieged city to deal with issues in energy sector.
BH K CIGRÉ is an organization that operates on domestic and international plan and deals with expert and scientific issues in the field of production, transmission and distribution of electrical energy, as well as with production of electrical energy, especially regarding the issues of electrical energy systems. It is a part of administrative council of the Parisian CIGRÉ.
Bičakčić sees an opportunity for BiH in energy, because this country has significant electrical energy resources and is an active exporter of electrical energy.
“BiH has those potentials and European policy is benevolent in the sense that they support the development of electrical energy sector in BiH, just as it would support the agricultural production and tourism instead of some other branches that somehow represent a competition,” Bičakčić said.
However, BiH does not use its potential enough nor it deals seriously with this sector, which is evidenced by the fact that BiH does not have a national energy strategy. Bičakčić believes that CIGRÉ might jump in on this and help in the process of designing of one such strategy.
BiH might find its chance in renewable energy sources which it currently does not exploit enough. According to Bičakčić, EU directives demand from BiH to make 40 percent of energy from renewable sources. He believes that this percentage might be even greater, given that BiH has substantial unused resources.
Bičakčić used the example of small water watercourses, which only use 10 percent of their potential.
“BiH has around 50 small hydropower plants and it can have 600 of them, 300 in each entity. They are being built now, but the administrative procedure is very complex. Until all the doors are open, people often give up on their nice intentions,” Bičakčić said.
Another problem is the lack of incentives for renewable energy without which, Bičakčić says, there is no cost-effectiveness of photo optic solar production. Bičakčić stated that by forcing renewable energy sources Germany has achieved the status of an active exporter in that field. However, the number of sunny hours in BiH amounts to 2000, which is 20 percent more than in Germany.
“One panel in BiH gives 20 percent more energy than in Germany. We can be more efficient,” Bičakčić said.
One of the chances that can still be used lies in the field of renewable energy sources. Bosnia and Herzegovina can use its rich natural potential to become a leader in this sector, if all administrative and political barriers were removed. Unusual potentials bear the promise of progress and preservation of natural resources, which are destroyed with the use of non-renewable energy sources.