Kazakhstan Approves New Green Projects in a Bid to Cut Fossil Fuels

Kazakhstan‘s new leadership, faced with concurrent challenges of volatile oil prices and the coronavirus pandemic, has approved nineteen new renewable energy projects worth $1.1 billion in the country’s latest effort to go green and diversify its energy supply, EURACTIV reported.

To date, there are already 97 operating renewable energy facilities in Kazakhstan, with over half of the renewable power generated by solar power plants and another fourth from wind power plants.

While more than 70% of the Central Asian country’s electricity is currently produced by coal-burning, the development of renewable energy has become an important agenda item under the post-Soviet state’s new leadership, and the country is stepping up efforts to transition to low-carbon development, diversify the economy and bring private capital and investments.

In February, Kazakhstan added its renewable energy industry to the list of priority investment projects, seeking to tackle the issue of high capital tax, as nearly 80% of costs in the renewables sector are racked up in the purchase of expensive equipment.

The move will allow investors to receive a range of tax breaks and benefits as part of the investment deal with the Kazakh foreign ministry.

Kazakhstan pledged to bring its share of renewable energy to 3% in 2020, 10% by 2030 and have half of its energy coming from green sources by 2050.

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