Russia to build a nuclear power plant in Uzbekistan
The specific location of the construction has still not been determined. However, the head of Rosatom Alexei Likhachev has already announced that it was highly likely that a power plant with two 1,200 megawatt capacity units would be built in Navoi Province. The project would cost an estimated USD 13 billion, with most of the investments coming from Russia. It is anticipated that this will help to resolve the problem of a shortfall in electricity. That is why the project is so strategically important for Uzbekistan – millions of families literally struggle to survive in winter, while the shortfall in electricity has compelled the owners of small and medium-sized enterprises to curtail production and send employees on unpaid leave throughout the winter.
The nuclear power plant will increase Uzbekistan’s total electricity capacity by 14,100 MW – by almost 20%
Uzbekistan is a reliable exporter of natural resources. The state earns hundreds of millions of dollars each year, exporting electricity to neighbouring countries, primarily to Afghanistan. The export of natural gas to China, Russia and CIS countries generates even more revenues. And the Uzbek government has nurtured for a long time plans to refocus gas flows from internal needs to external needs in order to ramp up exports.
The late President Islam Karimov recognised the need to build a nuclear power plant. However, work was not commenced on the plant owing to environmental issues, high costs and the seismic specifics of the region.
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