June 11, 2024

Solar Energy Project in Kyrgyzstan Advances with IFC

Solar energy in the Kyrgyz Republic is turning in a big way. Since the second phase of a major solar power development project has taken a step forward, after the Ministry of Energy of the Kyrgyz Republic and the Ministry of Economy and Commerce signed a memorandum of understanding with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to promote the project.

This agreement was concluded after International Investment Energy Forum in Vienna, Trend reports.

Expanding Solar Energy Capacity in Batken and Talas Regions

In the first phase of the project, IFC helped Kyrgyzstan to conduct an assessment and structure a pilot 100-150 MW solar energy project in the Kochkor district, Naryn region. This work has laid the foundation for increasing private sector investment into this sector.

With a view to the second stage of the project, which is the construction of two solar power plants at a capacity of 100-150 MW in the regions of Batken and Talas, a comprehensive plan of a solar power plant complex with a capacity of up to 500 MW at final stages has been developed.

At the end of the project we will have more electric energy consumers in our republic, the cost of electric energy will become cheaper, more ‘green’ electric energy will be produced and consumed for the good of our republic.

New Solar Energy Powers 125,000 Households

The solar energy plant will be developed in a high solar irradiance area; therefore, the solar energy of this plant will be credible. The construct of the plant will start in the early 2025, finished and put into production certainly at this time, should be in the end of 2026.

The plant will have the design capacity of about 150 MW for electricity production, which will cover 75,000 families’ needs. Although it will significantly reduce the dependence of the region on imported energy and offset paid for it, it will also help to reduce the population’s electricity cost.

Secondly, The Talas solar power plant will be built on an area which boasts of constant and abundant exposure of sunlight as well as flat and even terrain, quite suitable for larger photovoltaic complexes. Construction will start in mid-2025. By late 2026 the plant will be operational.

The Talas power plant will help reduce the region’s carbon footprint by displacing the region’s fossil fuel-based energy production, while providing power for more than 50,000 homes and tens of thousands of local jobs during the construction and operation phases.

Attracting Global Investment in Solar Energy

Right now, IFC is leading the process to find private investors, through an open international tender. Four major international companies had submitted bids by the end of March, and screening is now taking place to identify qualified candidates. The second phase of the tender is expected to begin shortly.

The solar energy project is part of Kyrgyzstan’s Energy Sector Development Strategy seeking to develop 1,500 MW of renewable energy by 2035, which is supported by the World Bank and seeks to diversify the energy sector, increase domestic electricity generation and decrease greenhouse gas emissions.

Spurred by cheap solar panels and anxious to reduce emissions, the world’s capacity to produce energy from the Sun grew by 22 per cent last year, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

The pattern extends across the planet. In Kyrgyzstan, authorities have set national targets to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by 30 per cent by the end of this decade, as part of global commitments to beating back climate change.

The latest financing with IFC is the litmus test of the Kyrgyz strategy for a green future. By 2035, the country hopes to develop 1,500 MW of renewable energy, covering 46 per cent of the projected energy demand, and help reduce dependency on fossil-fuel imports.

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