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EBRD finances largest hydropower project in the Kyrgyz Republic

By Anton Usov

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Lebedinovskaya HPP supplies energy to the capital city of Bishkek

  • EBRD finances largest hydropower project in the Kyrgyz Republic
  • Bank funds of €13.8 million will help modernise the 7.6 MW Lebedinovskaya HPP
  • Improved energy security and better climate resilience for the country

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is improving the energy security of Bishkek, the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic, and the climate resilience of the national energy system by making its largest investment in the country’s hydro power sector in 20 years. 

Chakan GES, the state-owned hydropower operator of nine small hydro power plants (HPPs), will receive a financial package of €13.8 million, comprising an EBRD sovereign loan of €8.8 million and an investment grant of €5 million. The money will help finance the rehabilitation and modernisation of the Lebedinovskaya HPP, which has an installed capacity of 7.6 MW.

The Lebedinovskaya HPP, commissioned in 1943-48, provides power to Bishkek, but its equipment is old, inefficient and urgently in need of replacement. The proposed improvements in productivity will help increase its annual electricity output by 56 per cent, bringing it to 50,300 MWh. New efficiency and safety measures will help the HPP improve its resilience to climate change and adapt to changing water flow levels.

The Bank, which became fully aligned with the Paris Agreement in 2022, is helping the Kyrgyz Republic to plan its green transition. The project will promote the sustainable use of water, which is important in a country badly affected by climate change. It will contribute to national efforts to solve the long-time operational issues of the country’s aged and inefficient HPP infrastructure. 

Technical cooperation funding from Austria under the High-Impact Partnership on Climate Action (HIPCA) will complement the Bank’s investment and support to Chakan GES in the management and implementation of the rehabilitation project.

To date, the EBRD has invested €881 million in the Kyrgyz Republic through 219 projects, with the majority of those funds going to support private entrepreneurship. 

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