Bulgaria has been ranked among the most attractive countries in the world for investments in renewable energy projects, a report from the US auditing and consulting company Ernst & Young showed.
The top three in the ranking are China, the US, and India while Bulgaria is among the top 35, according to the attractiveness indices. This is the first time Bulgaria is included in the report along with Morocco, Taiwan, and Chile.
The report points out the last several months were not only very tumultuous for the Middle East and Northern Africa, but confusing for the world renewable energy markets by directing the attention once again to the need of security of energy supplies and oil prices volatility. The earthquake-triggered serious damage at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, NPP, in Japan is also noted as grounds for increased expectations towards the renewable energy sources.
"China has reached its highest index position yet, due mainly to diversification of its renewables portfolio with an increased offshore wind and CSP focus. This broadening scope as new technologies become commercially viable illustrates a key trend seen elsewhere with offshore wind in Taiwan, UK and the Nordics, and CSP in Morocco, the US and India.
The US stays in second position. President Obama has voiced support for renewables, but Republican opposition in Congress is causing a stalemate. Utility scale solar projects seem immune to this, but lack of liquidity in power offtake arrangements remain the major barrier to new utility scale wind projects," the report reads.
Ernst &Young further note that "European government budget cuts and reductions in feed-in tariffs are causing cell prices to fall, yet rising commodity costs are squeezing solar manufacturers'
Bulgaria is 32nd, ahead of Austria, Chile and the Czech Republic.
The Ernst & Young experts point out Bulgaria's natural resource potential is being hindered by policy barriers.