By Kamila Aliyeva
Tajikistan exported over 1.3 billion kilowatt hours of electricity to Afghanistan worth 456 million somoni (over $50 million) in 2017, Tajik media reported citing the Ministry of Energy.
At present, electricity is supplied to a neighboring country in small quantities in order to preserve the power transmission line.
“Since October 1, up to 50 megawatts of electricity have been exported to the border province of Kunduz in Afghanistan. This is done for the safety of the line since there is a probability of the wire being stolen if they are not energized. The Afghan side asked us to increase the supply, but we explained to them that we cannot do this,” Minister of Energy and Water Resources of Tajikistan Usmonali Usmonzoda said.
He stressed that every kilowatt of electricity to Afghanistan is sold for 4 cents. The average tariff within Tajikistan is about two cents per kilowatt.
The export of electricity from Tajikistan to Afghanistan is mainly carried out from early April to late September. Tajikistan can increase the export of electricity to a neighboring country in the summer season, however, the Afghan side does not consume more than this indicator.
Tajik electricity is mainly consumed by the province of Puli Khumri and Kabul. In winter, with the approval of the government of the republic, exports are carried out at a volume of 50 MW to the province of Kunduz, although the Afghan side asked to increase this figure in the specified period.
In 2017, Tajikistan produced 18.1 billion kWh of electricity, which is 889.8 million kWh more than in 2016. Tajikistan exported electricity in the amount of over 1.3 billion kWh in 2016.
Previously both countries were involved in CASA-1000, an interregional electricity transmission project in Central and South Asia set to connect four countries, however, Afghanistan abandoned its share of electricity due to dearth of demand.
Kamila Aliyeva is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Kami_Aliyeva
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