World Bank to improve livelihoods of communities in Kyrgyzstan

BISHKEK (TCA) — More than 300,000 people are expected to benefit from improved services and facilities in their villages thanks to US$ 10 million in financing in the Community Support Project associated with the Central Asia South Asia Electricity Transmission and Trade Project (CASA-1000). The Kyrgyz CASA-1000 Community Support Project was approved on April 10 by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors, including US$ 5 million a concessional credit and US$ 5 million as a grant. An additional grant of US$ 2 million is being provided from the CASA-1000 Multi-Donor Trust Fund supported by the UK Department for International Development and the US Government.

The Community Support Project will benefit communities living in 22 Aiyl Aimaks (sub-districts) located along the 450km stretch of the transmission line in the Kyrgyz Republic, extending from the Datka substation (Jalal-Abad Oblast) to the border with Tajikistan. The line transmits excess hydropower energy in the summer from Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan to Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Community Support Project ensures that communities near the transmission line benefit from the project in a direct and tangible way.

“In addition to the investment in electricity infrastructure in the CASA-1000 Project, the World Bank and development partners are providing funding for community support programs to facilitate revenue-sharing and improve livelihoods in communities living near the CASA-1000 transmission line in Batken, Jalal-Abad and Osh Oblasts of this country,” says Bolormaa Amgaabazar, World Bank Country Manager for the Kyrgyz Republic. “We are looking forward to active engagement of the people in the participating villages, especially the youth who will play an important role in this CASA-1000 community support project.”

The new Community Support Project will improve the social and economic infrastructure and livelihoods of participating communities and surrounding administrative areas. The project will rely on a community-driven approach to ensure local investments are tailored to community needs. “Communities are very knowledgeable about local problems and how they can be solved. They will be empowered and supported to plan, implement and monitor the local investments,” says Janelle Plummer, World Bank Senior Social Development Specialist, and Task Team Leader for the project.

Communities in a 3km-wide “corridor” surrounding the transmission line will receive support to improve village electricity. Also, depending on their needs, communities can choose to invest in other socio-economic infrastructure such as first aid points, rehabilitation of roads, school hygiene and sanitation, kindergartens, street lighting or other options that help to reduce poverty and improve living standards. Residents of targeted Aiyl Aimaks will also receive support for livelihoods development. The project will be implemented from 2019 to 2023 by the Community Development and Investment Agency.

The World Bank’s overall mission in the Kyrgyz Republic is to reduce poverty and promote economic growth and shared prosperity. 50% of the World Bank’s assistance to the Kyrgyz Republic is in the form of grants, requiring no repayment. The other 50% is credit with no interest and a 0.75 percent service charge repayable in 38 years, including a 6-year grace period. Since 1992, the Bank’s financial assistance to the Kyrgyz Republic has amounted to nearly US$ 1.5 billion in the form of grants and highly concessional credits.

Sergey Kwan


Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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