NUR-SULTAN – Kazakhstan has attracted 780 billion tenge (US$$1.8 billion) for the development of renewable energy since 2014, said Kazakh Energy Minister Magzum Mirzagaliyev at a Nov. 9 meeting of the country’s investment office chaired by Kazakh Prime Minister Askar Mamin.
The meeting of the investment office, a new mechanism to attract and support investors, focused on Kazakhstan’s prospects to develop renewable energy and health care.
As Kazakhstan is committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2060, developing renewable energy remains a top priority. In May, Kazakhstan set an ambitious target of bringing the share of renewable energy in the nation’s total energy grid up to 15 percent by 2030 from the current three percent.
Out of 780 billion tenge (US$$1.8 billion) of renewable energy investments since 2014, 150 billion tenge (US$349.6 million) were invested in the first nine months of 2021.
Over the years, Kazakhstan commissioned 126 renewable energy plants with a total power generation capacity of 1,975 megawatts, twice as much as in 2019, and created more than 2,000 jobs in the field. The number of renewable energy facilities includes 33 wind and 49 solar hydroelectric plants.
Solar power plants currently generate 41 percent of the renewable energy in the country followed by wind power plants and hydropower plants.
To achieve its targets, Kazakhstan will need to commission seven gigawatts of renewable energy that will allow for the attraction of three trillion tenge (US$6.9 billion) in investments into the industry, said the minister.
The Kazakh government reached agreements with ADQ, an Emirati holding company with a broad portfolio of major enterprises, spanning key sectors of Abu Dhabi’s diversified economy, and Total Energies, a French multinational integrated oil and gas company.
These agreements envision the gradual introduction of renewable energy facilities with a goal of five gigawatt capacity in the next 10 years. The ministry also expects these projects will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions by eight million tons and create 3,000 jobs.
As the upfront costs of introducing renewable energy capacity are high, attracting green financing tops the agenda. The country’s new Environmental Code that came into effect on July 1 provides the mechanisms to stimulate businesses to implement green projects.