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As Uzbekistan seeks carbon neutrality and regional dominance in renewable energy by 2050, the first major green projects have just been completed – the country’s first solar power plant – $ 100 million, and 100 megawatts of solar power – opened in late August. .
Historically, the state relied on fossil fuels for power generation, but solar and wind power are now cheaper. So by 320 days a year, Uzbekistan plans to generate more than 25 percent of its renewable energy by 2030.
Officials also see this shift as a boost to economic growth. “We see our potential in the green economy,” said Uzbekistan’s Deputy Prime Minister Jamshid Kuchkarov. To join the ranks of the middle-income countries, we need to skip some. And we see an opportunity to jump into the green economy, the digital economy.
“We see great potential, and we promote solar energy. It’s not just fashion, it gives us economic meaning. ”
Analysts say the strategy could help overcome the country’s long-running economic and daily power outage.
Nur Na voi, built in collaboration with the Mubadala Sovereignty Fund of the United Arab Emirates, is worth $ 6.5 billion out of 19 Uzbek’s renewable energy projects over the next five years, said President Shavkat Mirziev.
With a rapidly growing population of 34m and a growing economy, the government expects energy demand to increase by about 50 percent over the next five years, to 100 billion kilowatt-hours per year.
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“We have big plans for new improvements and projects in the power industry,” Mirzioyev said in a statement. “The green economy and renewable energy sources will be the basis for sustainable economic development in the 21st century, and by 2030 our potential for electricity generation will be more than 30 percent,” he added.
Nur Navoi was Uzbekistan’s first public-private partnership. Designed, financed and built by Masdar, and financed by the European Development Bank (IFC) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the EBD estimates that up to $ 60 billion in loans for construction and development will be used.
Masdar The UAE company plans to finance and build three other solar projects in Uzbekistan, which is considered a strategic investment. In addition, it is working on Central Asia’s largest wind farm, hoping to generate 1.5GW a year by 2024.
Uzbekistan is also negotiating on hydropower, announcing 62 projects, including new construction and renovation. A.D. By 2030, these plants are expected to produce 13 percent of the total energy mix by 2020, according to the Ministry of Energy’s strategy.
Overall, the strategy uses Uzbekistan to produce 45 percent of its electricity from natural gas, 17 percent from solar energy, and 8 percent from nuclear power plants.
Kuchkarov says the green agenda also includes plans to turn Uzbekistan into a consumer and manufacturer of electric vehicles. So far, there are only 360 such vehicles in the country. To further attract the population in EVs, the state is considering subsidies.
Analysts believe that Uzbekistan’s infiltration of new power plants is a result of domestic energy shortages. It is common to be black.
“One of the key factors driving Uzbekistan to develop renewable energy sources is the lack of energy in the country, especially in isolated regions,” said Ben Godwin, co-director of Prism Political Risk Management.
“In terms of the pace of renewable energy, they are a very attractive option for Uzbekistan,” he said, noting that the country is already a regional leader in renewable energy, and that Kazakhstan alone has a reasonable level of investment.
Uzbekistan is a producer of uranium and precious metals and has made a significant contribution to the global low carbon supply chain, Godwin said. Another logical step for Uzbekistan, which plans to build its first nuclear power plant with Russia’s Rozatom, is to use uranium for nuclear power. The two agreed on the project in 2018, but construction has not yet begun.
Scott Osserov, Uzbekistan’s chief investment officer at the Frontier Capital Uzbekistan Fund, thinks it makes sense to skip Uzbekistan’s solar and wind projects and focus on nuclear power plants instead.
“Uzbekistan is the 10th largest producer of uranium and is supported by natural gas, even considering the conversion of hydrocarbons into nuclear energy,” he argues.
He said there was no reason for Uzbekistan to ignore electricity and become a regional exporter in the current distribution network.