LNG Hrvatska, plin.jpg
Photograph: lng.hr

The European Commission does not want to comment on a dispute about land on which a future liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal is to be built on the northern Croatian island of Krk and says it has not received any complaint from a group of foreign investors over alleged non-transparent and unfair public tenders.

"We are not aware of the complaint you mention," a source from the Commission has said in response to Hina's queries.

Development Grupa, which is led by Canadian Pulsat Global Capital and which includes Canada's BSH Group as well as a few Croatian companies, Allianz insurer and ZABA bank, has stated that it reported to the European Commission's Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) and OLAF, European Anti-Fraud Office, the "LNG Croatia", a company set up by the Croatian government to prepare a project of the construction of the LNG terminal at Omisalj.

The proposed project is to include the construction and operation of the infrastructure necessary for receiving, storing, reloading and regasification of liquefied natural gas. The project is recognised by the European Commission as a project of common interest.

A few days ago, the Development Group stated that it was finalising the job of purchasing land on Krk where the LNG should be built.

The group is set to develop the Krk Energy Hub, worth EUR 4.7 billion euros, which will deploy 1,800 workers.

This prompted LNG Croatia to claim that this group of investors failed to respond to a public call for investment in LNG Croatia LLC.

However, Development Grupa insists that tenders and public calls have been carried out in a non-transparent and unfair manner.

The EC Directorate-General for Energy says in its response to Hina that "there is a contractual relationship between the Commission/INEA  (Innovation and Network Executive Agency manages the project funding under the Connecting Europe Facility) and LNG Croatia company which is based on two existing Connecting Europe Facility grant agreements.  The promoter LNG Hrvatska was granted funds from the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) for two actions linked to the development of the terminal, project of common interest 6.5.1, following the calls for proposals for the CEF-Energy programme 2014 and 2015-1."

"We have no further information," the source from the Commission said.

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