Tajikistan cancels daytime electricity rationing

DUSHANBE (TCA) — Tajikistan has cancelled daytime electricity rationing starting from January 5, Avesta news agency reports with reference to the country’s energy authorities.

Uninterrupted electricity supply will be provided from 5 am until 10 pm starting from January 5.

The authorities say the move owes to the operation of Dushanbe thermal electric power plant #2 and the better than last year water flow in the Vakhsh river.  

Due to favorable weather conditions, the water flow in Vakhsh is growing, increasing the water level in the reservoir of the Nurek hydroelectric power plant, the largest power plant in Tajikistan.

Tajikistan introduced electricity rationing starting from November 1.

Only the capital, Dushanbe, and regional capitals are exempted from the rationing scheme.

About 98 percent of Tajikistan’s electricity is produced by hydropower plants, but cold weather in winters lowers the water level of rivers used by the hydropower plants, leading to a drop in electricity production.

Tajikistan has introduced electricity rationing every winter since the early 1990s.

In October 2016, Tajikistan started the construction of the Rogun hydro power plant’s dam, a massive project that, if completed, would be the world’s tallest and should give Tajikistan a stable energy supply.

Authorities say the Rogun Dam will be able to provide electricity for the whole country, and could also provide parts of Afghanistan and Pakistan with cheap electricity.

Italian construction company Salini Impregilo won a $3.9 billion contract to build the dam.

The plan is to have two of the six turbines of the Rogun hydro power plant start producing electricity for sale by 2018. The first turbine is to go into service in August 2018, followed by the second one in October of the same year.

Once completed, the Rogun power plant will have 6 turbines of 600 MW each with a total installed capacity of 3,600 MW.