Tajikistan reportedly plans to begin supplying surplus electricity to Uzbekistan.  This year, Tajikistan is expected to supply 1.5 billion kWh of electricity to the neighboring country. 

“Tajikistan can begin supplying electricity to Uzbekistan next month,” a source in the Tajik government told Asia-Plus in an interview.

According to him, Tajikistan is expected to supply annually up to 1.5 billion kWh of electricity to Uzbekistan.

“Dushanbe and Tashkent are currently discussing the terms of delivery of Tajik electricity to Uzbekistan,” the source added.

The final decision on this issue will be made during Uzbek president’s state visit to Tajikistan scheduled for early March.   

Meanwhile, the Minister of Energy and Water Resources, Usmonali Usmonzoda, told lawmakers on December 20 last year that Tajikistan can start supplying surplus electricity to Uzbekistan next summer.

The minister noted that Tajikistan and Uzbekistan were determined to restore the Central Asian unified power.

Central Asia’s nations have repeatedly stated the necessity of resurrection of Central Asia’s unified power grid in recent years.  Tajikistan has repeatedly said that Uzbekistan is also interested in restoration of the Central Asian unified power grid.

Some international experts consider that Tajikistan is the Central Asian state currently most interested in reviving the grid.  Back in 2007, it was the worst prepared state in the region to handle the frigid winter.  Two years later, when another harsh winter hit the country, Tajikistan, without seeking permission, reportedly drew more than its allocated share from the regional unified grid.  

Kazakhstan suspended its participation in the Central Asian unified power grid in February 2009 and redirected electricity supplies for domestic use.

Kazakhstan’s national energy network (KEGOK) said in a statement on February 26, 2009 that extra electricity exports to Tajikistan, for example, led to power outages in southern Kazakhstan.

Uzbekistan officially left the Soviet-era regional power grid that united the country with its three Central Asian neighbors in December 2009. 

Tajik authorities that time criticized Uzbekistan’s decision as an effort to put pressure on neighbors.  The move left Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan facing severe electricity shortages during the winter months.

Uzbekistan’s geographic location made it one of the most important members of the unified system, as many regions in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan had been supplied with electricity through power lines crossing Uzbek territory.

For the last several years, Turkmenistan has wanted to sell electricity to Tajikistan, but that power would be most easily transferred using lines that cross some 200 kilometers of the territory of Uzbekistan, which left that regional power grid.  Therefore, the Turkmen-Tajik deal never moved forward.

However, after introducing new facilities into operation Tajikistan now meets its annual requirements in electricity almost completely.    

According to the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources of Tajikistan (MoEWR), Tajik power system is fully prepared for operation in parallel with the Central Asian unified power grid.  Tajikistan is reportedly ready to supply electricity to neighboring countries.  Today the only problem is that Uzbekistan has dismantled the 500 kV power transmission line from the Guzar substation in its territory to the Regar substation in Tajikistan, Tajik power engineering specialists say.

Tajikistan has sufficient summer-time (defined as May 1 to September 30) hydropower surpluses to export to the neighboring countries.

Tajikistan is reportedly able to export up to 5 billion kWh of electricity during summer period.  Today, Tajikistan exports 800 million kWh of electricity to Afghanistan and 600 million kWh of electricity to Kyrgyzstan during summer period.  The remaining 3.6 billion kWh of Tajikistan’s surplus electricity remain unused during summer period because of withdrawal of Uzbekistan from the Central Asian unified power grid.