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The first geothermal power plant in Croatia, the 16.5-megawatt (MW) Velika 1, near Bjelovar (84 km east of Zagreb in central Croatia), was officially opened on Tuesday, the Ministry of Environment Protection and Energy said in a statement cited by news portal SeeNews.

The geothermal power plant is near Bjelova, Croatia. Photo by Stefan Brajkovic/

Turkey’s MB Holding was awarded a contract to build the Velika 1 geothermal power plant, an investment of HRK 325 million (USD 48.4 million), in 2015.

The plant has been in operation since March and has generated more than 55 gigawatt-hour (GWh) of electricity thus far, the ministry said.

A total of 15 Bosnian companies took part in the construction of the plant, which took two years to compete, reported.