TASHKENT (TCA) — The Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Board of Directors on December 13 approved a $450 million loan to help install between 850 to 950 megawatts (MW) in additional generation capacity in the Talimarjan thermal power plant (TPP) using combined cycle technology, which will help improve power generation efficiency and energy security in Uzbekistan.
“Modernizing Uzbekistan’s energy sector and power generation facilities are central to the economy and development of the country,” said Seung Duck Kim, Energy Specialist at ADB’s Central and West Asia Department. “ADB’s assistance will help Uzbekistan meet its growing energy needs and enhance the sustainability of the energy sector.”
Uzbekistan’s energy sector currently contributes around 10% of the country’s gross domestic product and about 25% of its total exports. However, the country’s electricity supply-demand gap is widening and is expected to reach around 14,600 gigawatt-hours by 2020.
The project will help expand Talimarjan TPP’s capacity through the installation of additional combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) units with combined heat and power facilities. The addition will increase the aggregate capacity of Talimarjan TPP to approximately 2,600 MW and improve its thermal efficiency from 48% to 52%.
The financing is a continuation of ADB’s previous support to Uzbekistan’s energy sector, following the 900 MW CCGT expansion at Talimarjan TPP commissioned in August 2017. The project will also boost efforts to realize the government’s ambitious program, called Vision 2030, to transition Uzbekistan to an industrialized and upper middle-income country by 2030. Energy sector modernization and reforms are the centerpieces of this vision.
The project will also enhance support to electricity sector reforms. ADB approval includes administration of a $2 million technical assistance grant provided by the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction to enhance financial sustainability of Uzbekenergo, the state-owned electricity utility, and strengthen power sector planning and tariff studies.