The elevation of human dignity in Uzbekistan is defined as a guide to action in all areas. Ensuring a prosperous human life largely depends on access to energy. Recent reforms have significantly reduced power outages. However, due to the sharp increase in energy demand in the autumn-winter period, a significant load falls on the power grid.
There is a need for an additional 2-3 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in the country. It is expected that over the next five years it will increase to 10 billion kilowatt-hours.
The most effective way in such a situation is to expand the use of renewable energy sources (RES) in homes, businesses, kindergartens, schools, and hospitals.
In this regard, issues of the widespread introduction of RES-based devices, and measures to encourage the population to use them were discussed at the meeting.
“Today’s issue is of national importance. We must start first with ourselves. Each hokim, minister, and leaders of all levels should set a personal example and install alternative energy equipment in their homes and at work”, Shavkat Mirziyoyev said.
In this regard, the introduction of a new system of support for the population and entrepreneurs has been determined. Thus, for each piece of installed equipment for generating electricity from solar and wind energy, depending on its capacity, compensation will be provided up to 15 million UZS, and for water heating equipment based on these energy sources – up to 2 million UZS. Instead of compensation, an opportunity will be given to take the equipment in installments for 3 years without interest.
Suppose a family spends an average of 195,000 UZS per month on heating water. If it installs a 200-liter solar water heater worth 6 million UZS, it will receive 2 million UZS in compensation from the state. By saving monthly costs, the water heater will pay for itself in 21 months.
If the family chooses to pay in installments instead of compensation, the monthly payment will be 170,000 UZS, which is less than current monthly expenses, and after three years, getting hot water will not require any expenses.
Another advantage is that people do not have to visit any office. All documents will be issued at the place of purchase of equipment. This system will be implemented at the expense of a special fund of the Ministry of Energy.
The Head of the state instructed to digitalize the entire process and launch the new system from September 1 this year.
The main attention was paid to providing such devices to low-income families, and residents of remote and hard-to-reach areas. The necessity of using devices based on alternative energy in the apartment buildings of the “Yangi O’zbekiston” (New Uzbekistan) neighborhoods, as well as in organizing street lighting as part of the “Obod Qishloq” (Prosperous Village) and “Obod Mahalla” (Prosperous Neighborhood) programs, was emphasized.
Positive experiences at places were noted.
For example, boarding school No. 3 in Khodjeyli district of the Republic of Karakalpakstan is equipped with solar panels with a capacity of 12 kilowatts and a 1-ton water-heating boiler. As a result, the institution saves 30 million UZS a year on electricity and natural gas.
The branch of the Mendeleev University of Chemical Technology in Tashkent uses a 100-kilowatt solar installation and 36 water heaters, which saves electricity by almost 2 billion UZS a year.
At the meeting, the task was set to disseminate this experience and gradually install equipment based on alternative energy in preschool institutions, schools, medical, and other social facilities.
In addition, from 2023, many buildings, such as shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, gas stations, airports, railway stations, and commercial banks, will have to provide part of their energy costs for hot water and outdoor lighting only from renewable energy sources.
Calculations show that Uzbekistan consumes electricity and gas for $10 billion a year. For example, last year the Ministry of Water Resources spent 3 trillion UZS on energy resources, while public education and healthcare systems spent 200 billion UZS each.
The President emphasized that it is time to start transferring all ministries and agencies, hokimiyats, and mahallas to alternative energy.
In this regard, the Ministry of Finance was instructed to establish energy consumption standards in government agencies, and develop a National Energy Saving Program in economic sectors and social facilities.
It was noted that taking into account the growing demand for alternative energy devices, it is necessary to increase their production in the country.
Hydroelectric power plants are another important source of energy. To increase the power generating capacity in the regions, sites suitable for the construction of micro and small hydroelectric power plants have been identified. 200 such projects have been developed with a total capacity of 56 megawatts.
The Head of the state noted the need for implementing projects based on the public-private partnership. At the same time, attractive purchase rates will be set for entrepreneurs, and the land will be transferred to the winner of the auction for a long-term lease. The surplus of electricity generated by solar, wind, and micro-hydroelectric power stations will be guaranteed to be purchased by the state for at least 10 years.
Entrepreneurs who spoke at the meeting shared their positive experiences. Responsible officials outlined their plans for ensuring the execution of the tasks.