CA, Nov 18 (Business Recorder). The Central Asia South Asia Electricity Trade and Transmission Project (CASA 1000), under which an amount of 1000-MW electricity has been planned to import from Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan via Afghanistan will be completed in five years time.
It is pertinent to mention that the federal cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has accorded its approval to the memorandum of understanding a day earlier as a part of the government efforts to bring the country out of ongoing energy crisis.
According to the sources, the project has been under discussion since 2006, which is likely to be completed with the financial assistance of World Bank, Asian Development Bank and Islamic Development Bank.
The project was launched during the Pakistan's Prime Minister's visit to Dushanbe and Tajikistan.
As many as two memorandums of understanding have been signed regarding development of the Central Asia South Asia Regional Electricity Market (CASAREM).
It is also notable that the Inter-Government Agreement was signed by four countries; The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, the Kyrgyz Republic (Kyrgyz Republic), the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and The Republic of Tajikistan (Tajikistan).
A consultant firm SNC-Lavalin International Inc, of Canada was hired to conduct techno-economic feasibility of the project that submitted its report in February 2011 with positive conclusions, sources maintained.
The main secretariat relating to the project will be based in Kabul which would implement and complete the project of 750 kilometres transmission line out of which 117 kilometres in Tajikistan, 562 kilometres in Afghanistan and 71 kilometres in Pakistan.
The project may be completed at an estimated cost of $873 million.
Tajikistan government would provide $182 million, Afghanistan 238 million dollar, Pakistan 153 million dollar and Kyrgyzstan would contribute 160 million dollar while $140 million would be made available under the head of others/miscellaneous cost.
The sources were of the view that the idea behind importing electricity from Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan is to boost investment in Pakistan and development of CAR Business with reference to trade with India, particularly after providing MFN status.
The sources further believed that the current Afghan India trade tie might be part of this project as the costs under the head of miscellaneous/others is the open end investment.