U.S. funds grid study for hydro-rich Kyrgyzstan

The United States has awarded a US$537,595 grant to the Kyrgyzstan Finance Ministry for study of a transmission line that will allow better domestic utilization, as well as export, of Kyrgyzstan hydropower.

The grant by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (TDA) will fund a study by U.S. contractors for the National Electrical Grid of Kyrgyzstan (NEGK). The study is to review route alternatives, line capacity requirements, and major risks and cost factors. The contractor also is to provide a preliminary design and cost estimate.

Kyrgyzstan is a net exporter of hydropower in the summer. However, problems in the transmission system prevent it from meeting winter demand. The proposal calls for a second north-south 500-kV transmission line to eliminate winter overloading and to permit more summer power exports from existing and planned hydro plants.

The line would support the export of power to Afghanistan and Pakistan as part of the Central-South Asia (CASA-1000) regional power market project. Four Central and South Asian nations, also including Tajikistan, are looking for development partners, investors, and contractors to develop a transmission line that will be a key link in the CASA power market. (HNN 8/6/07)

A solicitation to conduct the study is to be available on the U.S. Federal Business Opportunities Internet site, www.fbo.gov. A winning bidder will be selected by NEGK.

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