ISLAMABAD: Tajikistan would export 1,000 megawatts of hydroelectric power to Pakistan by 2018 under Central Asia South Asia (CASA-1000) project through a 750-kilometre-long transmission line with an estimated cost of $1.16 billion.

Talking to APP on Friday about Pakistan-Tajikistan bilateral relations, Ambassador of Tajikistan Sherali Saidamir Jononove said: “Pakistan is one of the first among those countries who recognised Tajikistan as an independent country and both the brotherly countries are enjoying cordial relations since then.”

Speaking about the details of the project, the ambassador said that the said transmission line of 500KV would also be utilised for transmitting more than 300MW hydroelectricity to Pakistan from Kyrgyzstan. To a question about the implementation of this project, the ambassador said that feasibility report had already been completed and working on the laying of transmission line from Kyrgyzstan-Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan would begin from May this year.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will also participate in the transmission line laying ceremony scheduled to be held in Tajikistan in May this year, he said.

About capacity of export, he said that only Tajikistan could export more than 5,000MW electricity to Pakistan through hydroelectric projects, especially in the summer.

“Working on another transmission line of the same capacity of 500KV from Tajikistan to Pakistan via Wakhan Corridor bordering Afghanistan would also begin shortly after the working of CASA-1000 transmission line,” the ambassador said. Regarding current status of the project, the ambassador said that a joint commission of both the countries was working on the implementation of CASA-1000 project and its upcoming meeting would be held next week in Dushanbe.

Asked about financing of the project, the ambassador said that a total estimated cost of the project was $1.16bn as per the feasibility study finalised with the support of the World Bank. Financing from IDA (World Bank), Islamic Development Bank, Arab Group and other donors was under consideration. A multi-donor trust fund was also being established for this project, he added.

Published in Dawn, January 9th, 2016