Russia hardly to support energy projects in Tajikistan without agreement with Uzbekistan: expert


Baku, Oct. 2, 2009, V.Zhavoronkova


Moscow will hardly support energy projects in Tajikistan without the consent of Uzbekistan, Russian expert on the Central Asia, Arkadiy Dubnov, said.

Tajikistan needs construction of hydropower plants (HP) to provide an additional amount of electricity. However, the country is in need of financing from abroad to implement its projects. The country was to attempt to attract investment to build a big Rogun hydropower plants.

Theoretically, Tajikistan considers Russia's financing the construction of hydropower plants. But, neighboring Uzbekistan fiercely opposes the construction of stations on the rivers of the region because the country believes this may limit the flow of water to Uzbekistan and expose the region to anthropogenic disaster.

However, Russia will not support the Dushanbe projects without the consent of Tashkent, the expert believe.

"As to Moscow's support to plans to build a power plant in Tajikistan without agreement with Uzbekistan, I think it is extremely unlikely," an international columnist for "Vremya novostey" newspaper, Dubnov wrote via e-mail.

"In my opinion, Tashkent is "very difficult and often unpredictable partner" for Moscow, but to have it as an opponent is much more problematic than Dushanbe," the expert added.

According to Dubnov, Tajikistan is a country that much more dependent on external support than Uzbekistan. Moreover, by the will of history, it is in the geopolitical and geo-economic impasse.

Regardless the projects related to electric power generation at hydroelectric power plants and its sale to India and Afghanistan, currently Tajikistan almost has nothing more to offer the region in economic cooperation or communication, Dubnov said.