KARAGANDA, Kazakhstan -- The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Green Climate Fund (GCF) are bringing a new solar energy plant to Kazakhstan.
The solar plant in Karaganda Province will be the largest built at one time in Central Asia, the EBRD announced late last month. It will add 100MW to Kazakhstan's renewable energy capacity and cut carbon dioxide emissions by 93,500 tonnes a year.
The project will be implemented by SES Saran LLP, a special-purpose company incorporated in Kazakhstan and owned by Joachim Goldbeck Holding GmbH of Germany.
The EBRD did not state the estimated completion date for the plant.
Kazakh and EBRD officials on November 28 signed loan and project support agreements in Astana for the solar power plant.
The financing package arranged by the EBRD includes a local-currency loan equivalent to up to $51.3 million (19 billion KZT), as well as a loan of up to $22.2 million (8.2 billion KZT) from GCF of South Korea.
A leader in solar power generation
Kazakhstan has strived to be a regional leader in solar power generation in recent years.
The project will help to develop the country's potential in renewables and strengthen the private sector's involvement in the power and energy sector, historically dominated by state entities, according to the EBRD.
The new solar plant will also contribute to Kazakhstan's national emissions reduction targets as well as the EBRD's Green Economy Transition (GET) strategy.
The project is part of the EBRD-GCF Kazakhstan Renewables Framework, which is designed to increase investments in renewables; provide technical assistance; and build institutional capacity for energy integration, renewable energy, carbon market policies and planning, with a total GCF contribution of $110 million (40.8 billion KZT).
The project expands co-operation between the EBRD and the Kazakh Ministry of Energy on developing renewable energy and Kazakh emissions trading scheme in the country in line with a memorandum of understanding signed in 2017.
The EBRD has committed €26.7 billion (11.2 trillion KZT) to its GET strategy since 2006, with €6.3 billion (2.6 trillion KZT) invested in renewable energy, both directly and through credit lines, and more than 10,000MW of total renewable capacity installed.
To date, the EBRD has invested more than €7.5 billion (3.1 trillion KZT) through 246 projects in the economy of Kazakhstan. Private sector support and diversification are among the EBRD's priorities in the country.