11 April, 2019

China, WB, IMF, Uzbekistan talk solar energy, micro hydro-power plants

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The 29th meeting of the Energy Sector Coordinating Committee (ESCC) of the Central Asian Regional Economic Cooperation Program (CAREC) was held in Tashkent (Uzbekistan), Trend reports with reference to the press service of the Ministry of Energy of Uzbekistan.

The Regional Economic Cooperation Development Program in Central Asia was launched in 1997 on the initiative of the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The goal of the Program is to promote the economic development of Central Asian states by expanding regional and multilateral cooperation in a number of areas, including energy.

Delegates were welcomed by the Deputy Minister of Energy of Uzbekistan Sherzod Khojaev, as well as the Director of the Central and West Asia Department of the Asian Development Bank Ashok Bhargava.

The meeting included sessions devoted to the reform of state-owned enterprises in the CAREC countries, the medium-term strategy of the CAREC energy sector, and regional trade and investment projects.

The meeting participants read reports on the strategy for reforming the electricity sector in Uzbekistan, developing investment projects in the energy system within the framework of CAREC, and discussed options for implementing public-private partnership schemes in the energy sector.

A separate session was devoted to solar energy development opportunities in the CAREC countries. A representative of the domestic International Solar Energy Institute made a presentation on the development of renewable energy in Uzbekistan, and delegates from Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan shared their experience in implementing pilot projects in the field of renewable energy.

The development of micro-hydropower plants in the CAREC countries was the subject of another session. Here, representatives of Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan shared their experience in implementing micro-hydro projects.

CAREC is an informal program, where all issues, including the expansion of the program, the entry of new participants, and others, are agreed upon by consensus.

Currently, there are 11 countries of the region participating in CAREC - Uzbekistan, China, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Afghanistan (since 2005), Pakistan, Turkmenistan (since 2010) and Georgia (since 2016), as well as international donor organizations: ADB, World Bank, EBRD, IMF, United Nations Development Program, Islamic Development Bank.

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