3 Jun 2024 12:28

Uzbekistan starts building $5 bln gas chemical complex, solar farm, airport

TASHKENT. June 3 (Interfax) - Uzbekistan has begun building a large gas chemical complex in the southwestern part of the country that will cost $5 billion, as well as a solar farm and airport, the press service of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev said after his working visit to the Bukhara region.

"Mirziyoyev launched the construction of three major facilities: a gas chemical complex, solar farm and international airport in Bukhara with the pressing of a symbolic button," the press release said.

The gas chemical complex, which will be built in the Karakul free economic zone, will be the first plant in the country to use methanol to olefin (MTO) technology. About $5 billion of investment will be raised under the project. The complex will process 1.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas and 430,000 tonnes of naphtha annually and is expected to produce 1.1 million tonnes of polymer products per year.

"The new plant will employ 2,000 people. In addition, it will give a push to the creation of dozens of businesses in the construction, textiles, leather and footwear, automobile, electrical and other related sectors, and lead to the creation of another 4,000 jobs," the press release said.

The equipment and technology for the plant will be supplied by companies from the United States, Germany, Denmark, Austria, Italy and China.

The MTO Gas Chemical Complex project was initiated by Saneg, Uzbekistan's largest oil and gas company, according to the project website.

The second project involves the construction of a 250 MW solar farm on 648 hectares by United Arab Emirates company Masdar. It is scheduled to be connected to the unified energy system in December 2025.

The third project involves building a new international airport in Bukhara to accommodate growing international tourist traffic at a cost of $226 million. It will see the construction of world-class infrastructure that will be able to handle 1,200 passengers per hour.