Kyrgyzstan: Progress on hydroelectric plants halted

Investment in hydroelectricity in Kyrgyzstan has come to a standstill and the government has announced that it is courting new investment partners. A new report published by The Diplomat and a recent government announcement indicate that the country will look beyond Russia, its traditional partner in hydroelectric development, for financing due to ambiguous signs coming from Moscow. Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev acknowledged the downturn in the Russian economy as a strong contributing factor and suggested that the Kyrgyz government is restless.

The two projects in question – the Kambarata-1 dam and the Upper Naryn cascade of four smaller dams have progressed incongruently during the past few years. Previous reports on the projects reflected recent statements and showed a lack of progress in both. The Kyrgyz government has reportedly allocated no funds to either project and placed the onus on Russia to develop both projects. As a result of this, one analyst noted, the dams’ construction are probably “low on the Kremlin’s to-do list” for now.

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