A London-based bank is providing a €2.5 million (£2.3m) loan to upgrade residential buildings and make them more energy efficient in Serbia.
The financing from the European Bank from Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will help improve the energy efficiency of up to 40 multi-storey buildings to help lower energy consumption and reduce CO2 levels in the city of Šabac.
The refurbishments will include insulation as well as the installation of smart technologies that can regulate heat and calculate consumption and heating costs.
The 40 buildings have been selected based on interest expressed by tenants following a survey conducted by housing associations, with priority given to buildings with higher energy use and larger heating areas.
The residential sector is one of the biggest consumers of energy in Serbia, where the average consumption is said to be up to three times higher than in developed European countries.
Old building stock constructed between the 1950s and 1980s with insufficient or no thermal insulation generates high energy losses, with estimates showing energy efficiency could be improved by up to 70%.
The project will be implemented by a Šabac district heating company, a public utility company fully-owned by the city of Šabac.
Zsuzsanna Hargitai, EBRD Regional Head for Western Balkans, said: “We are delighted to support the initiative and financing model of the Šabac district heating company for energy efficiency in housing blocks and we look forward to replicating this model and supporting similar initiatives across Serbia.”