Nebojša Grbušić M.Sc.E.E., General Manager, Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies: Benchmark Company for Ecological Transformation

For Veolia, ecological transformation means radically changing production and consumption patterns, placing ecology at the heart of every process and every assessment

In Serbia, Veolia has been successfully implementing projects within the ecological transition since 2006. In his interview for Diplomacy& Commerce magazine, Nebojša Grbušić, general manager of this company, speaks more about ongoing and future projects.

Nebojša Grbuši M.Sc.E.E., General Manager, Veolia Water Solutions & Technologies Belgrade, Executive Manager for business development Balkans area, Veolia CEE – Representative office in Belgrade and Legal representative, Sade branch in Belgrade

What does the Veolia Group represent?

Veolia Group aims to become the benchmark company for ecological transformation. Present on five continents with nearly 179,000 employees, the Group designs and deploys useful, practical solutions for the management of water, waste and energy that are contributing to a radical turnaround of the current situation. In 2020, the Veolia group served 95 million inhabitants with drinking water and 62 million with sanitation, produced nearly 43 million megawatt-hours and recycled 47 million tonnes of waste. Veolia Environment (Paris Euronext: VIE) achieved consolidated sales of 26.01 billion euros in 2020.

What are Veolia’s activities in Serbia?

Veolia has been present in Serbia since 2006. We have four companies in Belgrade, covering Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia & Hercegovina, North Macedonia, and Albania. We operate in several different business lines covering drinking water and wastewater treatment, energy production, and waste management. So far, Veolia has constructed several wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) in Serbia, including WWTP in the Vrbas, with the most extensive treatment capacity in Serbia at the moment (based on the technical submitted by the Client).

We are present on the WWTP Leskovac, completing the construction of the sludge line and the commissioning of the waterline of the WWTP that was constructed by another contractor a few years ago but still not commenced due to different reasons. We are also completing WWTPs at the thermal power plant in Kostolac. The new WWTP construction and commissioning contract in Kraljevo Veolia was signed in December 2021. This project is among the most significant projects on the WWTP market in Serbia and is the first of this kind after a few years.

“We operate in several different business lines covering drinking water and wastewater treatment, energy production and waste management”

Besides the above-mentioned WWTP-related projects, Veolia has recently completed a drinking water treatment plant in Subotica that will provide additional reliability for the water supply of the citizens of Subotica. Our energy division is currently involved in multi-year operations and maintenance of the recently constructed Belgrade Airport boiler room and several industrial energy efficiency projects. Recently Veolia received the European Commission’s decision to approve the acquisition of Suez. This decision is a decisive step in the creation of a global champion of ecological transformation, as the green light from the European Commission is a key factor in the realization of this Veolia’s industrial project. The acquisition of Suez will significantly boost Veolia’s activities in Serbia due to the presence of Suez on the Vinča landfill project. Veolia’s experience on similar projects worldwide combined with the local team in Belgrade will significantly contribute to the Vinča project execution.

What exactly is ecological transformation and in which way does Veolia participate in that process in Serbia?

For Veolia, ecological transformation means radically changing production and consumption patterns. It means placing ecology at the heart of every process and every assessment. It means providing radical, meaningful solutions to significant problems with and for its stakeholders: local authorities, manufacturers, civil society, employees, etc.

Veolia is eager and capable of offering its expertise and experience in Serbia to improve environmental protection and foster ecological transformation by building the capacity in the municipalities and on the governmental level for proper strategy development and efficient and reliable projects execution in the field of environmental protection.

What are the company’s plans?

Never have environmental concerns been so instantly visible, or their consequences for our societies so real to people. In becoming the benchmark company for ecological transformation, Veolia is committing to accelerating and expanding the deployment of existing solutions while simultaneously creating the solutions of tomorrow. We are moving forward hand-in-hand with our stakeholders, convinced that economic, social, and environmental challenges must form an indivisible whole. We are manifesting our Purpose through our daily activities on the ongoing and future projects in Serbia and the Balkans, demonstrating our commitment to the sustainable and human-oriented future.

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