SUNIR to Build Power Plants in Kazakhstan

SUNIR to Build Power Plants in KazakhstanSUNIR to Build Power Plants in Kazakhstan

Iran and Kazakhstan signed a $600 million deal on Sunday to build three power production units in the ex-Soviet country.

The agreement was signed between Iran Power & Water Equipment and Services Export Company (SUNIR) and Kazakhstan's Eurasian Invest Group TOO during the latest session of Iran-Kazakhstan Commercial Commission in Tehran, Shana reported.

Bahman Salehi, chief executive of SUNIR, said the agreement includes the construction of a 50-megawatt wind turbine plant and two thermal plants with an electric output of 250 MW.

"One plant will be built off the Kazakhstan coast in the Caspian Sea and the two other projects in the city of Almaty," Salehi said without elaboration.

The contract marks the first venture of SUNIR in Kazakhstan's large energy market, which has carried out projects in 25 countries and has active operations in 13 states.

According to reports, Kazakhstan has 71 power stations with a total installed generating capacity of 19.6 GW. It has the largest recoverable coal reserves in Central Asia and is the second largest coal producer in the region.

Coal is used to power around 70% of the country’s electricity generation, with oil, natural gas and hydropower each accounting for about 10% of total generated electricity. But the country is slowly taking steps to diversify its electricity supplies.

Interestingly, Kazakhstan has unbundled its power generation, transmission and distribution. About 87% of electric power generation are in the private sector. Of the 21 electricity distribution companies, only two remain state-owned.