EBRD Finances Kazakh Municipal Project, Salt Production Facility

ASTANA – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is helping to address pressing water treatment and environmental issues in Kazakhstan’s fourth-largest municipality, Aktobe, by financing the construction of a new wastewater treatment plant and associated infrastructure, reported the bank’s press service on March 18.

Photo credit: EBRD. Click to see the map in full size. The map is designed by The Astana Times.

The bank is extending a sovereign loan of up to 47.4 billion tenge (US$105 million) to a state-owned JSC Aqtobe Su-Energy Group, a company responsible for centralized water supply, wastewater treatment and district heating in the city. The loan, which represents the EBRD’s largest municipal project in Central Asia to date, will also finance the construction of a sludge treatment facility with a biogas-fueled power generation unit.

The new treatment plant will replace the current facility, which was commissioned in 1984 and is now obsolete, and will process up to 100,000 cubic meters (m3) of contaminated water each day – enough to satisfy the needs of the 600,000 people living in Aktobe.

Photo credit: EBRD.

EBRD is also supporting the expansion of Araltuz, a leading Kazakhstan-based producer of table and low-grade technical salt in Central Asia, by extending a convertible loan of up to 5.5 billion tenge (US$12 million). The funds will contribute to the company’s investment program and support the construction of new manufacturing facilities to launch the domestic production of vacuum salt (also known as evaporated or culinary salt).

The EBRD loan will help Araltuz diversify the structure of its exports and expand to Europe, the Middle East and China.

With more than €10.1 billion (US$11 billion) invested in the country to date through 320 projects, Kazakhstan is the EBRD’s largest and longest-running banking operation in Central Asia.

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