The Asian Development Bank has approved a grant of $154.4 million to Afghanistan to extend the country’s power grid into two western provinces, the bank said.
“Herat and Farah are not connected to the national grid, leading to higher costs of doing business for people in these provinces, environmental degradation, and weak sustainable development indicators,” said ADB Energy Specialist Takhmina Mukhamedova.
“Connecting villages in these two provinces to the grid will tangibly and sustainably improve health outcomes, living conditions, and economic opportunities for households living in the harshest conditions,” she added.
The assistance includes $36.4 million from the Asian Development Fund. The Afghanistan Infrastructure Trust Fund (AITF) has supplied an additional $118 million in co-financing, contributed by the Government of Italy through the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Afghan National Army Trust Fund. AITF, administered by ADB, is a donor-financed fund established in 2010 to improve the livelihoods of the Afghan people through infrastructure development.
The project will extend power supply from Turkmenistan under the ongoing power purchase and sales agreement between the two countries. This includes supplying power transmission from local wind and solar photovoltaic projects of up to 100 megawatts and substituting electricity generated from diesel with renewable and imported gas-based grid power at a lower cost. The project will also finance first time access to electricity in the targeted areas.