Sharing Czech experiences and practice recommendations in preparation for biofuel blending in Serbia

The National Petroleum Committee of Serbia hosted on 25 November the final expert workshop marking the finishing stages of the project “BIO4BLEND – Impact of Legislative on biofuels on Serbian market: Overcoming the problems and introduction of EU best practice in early stage of biofuels implementation on the Serbian market” on the premises of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Serbia    

In his opening address, Ambassador of the Czech Republic to Serbia H.E. Tomáš Kuchta expressed his pleasure at having the opportunity to open the final workshop and highlighted the traditionally good economic relations between the Czech Republic and the Republic of Serbia and the importance of Czech assistance to Serbia in building a stronger economic environment and support to Serbia’s EU integrations. Ambassador Kuchta assessed the BIO4BLEND Project as a continuation of a successful, long-standing cooperation between the Prague University of Chemistry and Technology and the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia and expressed his firm belief that the sharing of knowledge and experiences from the Czech Republic through this project would be largely beneficial to all BIO4BLEND Project stakeholders, in light of the significant experience the Czech Republic had gained starting from its biofuel rollout on the market to the current harmonisation of Czech legislation with the EU RED III Directive.

In her address, General Secretary of the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia Senka Walid presented the audience with details of the recently adopted Serbian government document setting the target share of biofuel for the Serbian market to become binding on all market players after 1 July 2022 and reiterated that she strongly believed the outcomes of the BIO4BLEND Project would broadly benefit all stakeholders in the Serbian petroleum market in preparations for rolling out biofuel blending and placement on the Serbian market.

BIO4BLEND Project Director Milan Pospíšil, Vice-Rector of the Prague University of Chemistry and Technology, noted that the BIO4BLEND Project followed the vein of former cooperation projects in being highly beneficial to both the Republic of Serbia and the Czech Republic, as it also helped them to gain new insights in the biofuel field. He stressed that the 2030 model for transport energy demand, initially prepared to meet Czech market demands and then tailored in the course of this project to the needs of the local, Serbian market and presented as such, would be a useful tool for the Serbian counterpart.

Just as the previous workshops, this one gathered a wide range of stakeholders including members of the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia, representatives of relevant ministries, state bodies and numerous oil and energy companies that learned more about the benefits of the project. Special interest was shown for a presentation of practice recommendations that responded to some of the most frequent dilemmas businesses had faced regarding biofuel production and placement.

The BIO4BLEND Project has been prepared in cooperation with the Prague University of Chemistry and Technology and co-funded through Czech development assistance.

The BIO4BLEND Project was launched in September 2021 with its first workshop hosted in Belgrade and continued through a study visit by a delegation of the National Petroleum Committee of Serbia to Prague in October and the final workshop in Belgrade in November 2021. The project is planned to officially close in end-January 2022 with the preparation of a final report.