Nikolai Podguzov: By 2035, the capacity of hydroelectric power plants in Central Asia will grow by 8,900 MW

02 November 2023

Almaty, November 2, 2023. In 2028-2029, Central Asia will face a permanent and persistent water scarcity. The water deficit is estimated at about 5-12 cubic kilometers annually. At the same time, the demand for electricity in Central Asia is expected to increase significantly over the next 10 years. Nikolai Podguzov, Chairman of the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) Management Board, noted the above when speaking at the World Hydropower Congress that is presently taking place in Bali.

"In the Central Asian region, hydropower plays a key role not only in generating electricity, but also in regulating river runoff for irrigation purposes. In this regard, the countries of the region are interested in the multipurpose use of their water resources and wish to attract investment to develop the water resources potential", Mr. Podguzov said, emphasizing that "great effort is being made to create favorable environment for investment in the modernization of existing and the construction of new hydroelectric power plants, as well as in the development of irrigation systems in the region."

According to Mr. Podguzov, the construction of new hydroelectric power plants with reservoirs, as well as the modernization of already functioning HPPs, will both reduce the impact of climate change and ensure the steady economic and social development of the region that highly relies on affordable environmentally friendly energy and sustainable irrigation water supply. Development of the existing significant hydropower potential of Central Asia may not only strengthen the local energy and food security (as well as increase the annual growth rate of regional GDP by 1.5%), but also help the countries of the region fulfill their obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Paris Agreement.

"According to our estimates, Central Asia is one of the few regions in the world where the hydropower potential has been developed by less than 25%. Currently, there are more than 80 hydroelectric power plants operating in the region, with a total installed capacity of about 14,000 MW. In the period up to 2035, it is planned to increase the capacity of local hydroelectric power plants by 8,900 MW due to the modernization of already functioning HPPs and the construction of new ones. The largest new projects being implemented in the region include the construction of the 1,860 MW Kambaratinskaya HPP-1 in the Kyrgyz Republic and the 3,600 MW Rogunskaya HPP in Tajikistan, the latter also known for its 335-meter-high dam – the tallest dam in the world," Nikolai Podguzov pointed out.

The Bank is planning to invest over $400 mln in the development of the water and energy complex of Central Asia over the next three years. This year, the EDB started financing the construction of the 100 MW Kulanak HPP in the Kyrgyz Republic and is conducting negotiations on financing other HPP projects that include Kambaratinskaya HPP-1 and Rogunskaya HPP – the largest hydroelectric power plants in Central Asia.

"As a regional development bank, the EDB provides its member countries with a full set of tools for investment in the water and energy complex development. Among other things, we issue long-term loans and green bonds; we also attract funding from other financial organizations and private investors to large projects, thus acting as the projects' financial partner; besides, we provide technical assistance in the preparation of preliminary documentation for large water and energy sector projects," said Nikolai Podguzov, Chairman of the EDB Management Board, as he encouraged all interested investors to cooperate in the preparation, financing and implementation of the projects focusing on the construction and modernization of hydroelectric power plants in the EDB member countries.

Additional Information:

The Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) is an international financial institution investing in Eurasia. For more than 17 years, the Bank has worked to strengthen and expand economic ties and foster comprehensive development in its member countries. The EDB's charter capital totals $7 bln. Its portfolio consists principally of projects with an integration effect in transport infrastructure, digital systems, green energy, agriculture, manufacturing, and mechanical engineering. The Bank’s operations are guided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals and ESG principles.

Eurasian Development Bank

Aigerim Akhanova

+7 (727) 244 40 44, ext. 6147

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