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PRESS RELEASE September 24, 2018

The CASA-1000 Project Crosses Another Important Milestone

Construction Expected to Begin in Early 2019

Almaty, Kazakhstan, September 24, 2018
─ The World Bank Group is helping the governments of four countries develop a cross-border energy market that will contribute to meeting the growing energy demand in Afghanistan and Pakistan, by transferring surplus summer power from the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan. This is part of the broader effort to build the trade, transport, and energy links needed for economic development and poverty reduction.

By putting in place the commercial and institutional arrangements and the transmission infrastructure, the World Bank Group-supported Central Asia-South Asia Regional Electricity and Trade Project (CASA-1000) is the first step toward creating the Central Asia-South Asia Regional Electricity Market (CASAREM).

One of the most critical components of CASA-1000 – a contract to design, build, and provide operation and maintenance support for two High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) power convertor stations – has been awarded to the Swiss company ABB together with its consortium partner Cobra Instalaciones y Servicios Spain. The HDVC convertor stations will form the backbone of the new cross-border energy market, enabling the trade of 1300MW of clean electricity between the regions.

“The World Bank is happy to see the strong commitment of countries from Central Asia and South Asia to addressing their energy challenges together,” said Lilia Burunciuc, World Bank Regional Director for Central Asia. “CASA 1000 is a key part of the broader effort to develop a regional electricity market linking Central Asia with the broader region and is also promoting energy security and economic development in the four countries part of the project.”

The World Bank is financing this project with the Islamic Development Bank, USAID, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, European Investment Bank and UK Department for International Development. The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is helping structure and competitively tender a series of public-private partnerships (PPPs) to attract key private sector players in electricity transmission. These include engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contracts for vital transmission infrastructure.

“CASA countries have made remarkable progress in advancing procurement of the project infrastructure and establishing the commercial arrangements for electricity trade over CASA-1000,” says Cassandra Colbert, IFC Central Asia Regional Manager. “Signing these important contracts for the two converter stations demonstrates that a complex project such as CASA-1000 can be realized with strong ownership by the participating countries.” 

“Countries in Central Asia are unique geographically and have plenty of natural resources, but they have much to gain from economic connections with other regions,” said Husam Beides, World Bank Lead Energy Specialist. “We expect that construction activities in the four CASA countries could start in early 2019 and commercial operation may be expected in late Summer 2021.”


About the World Bank Group

The World Bank Group plays a key role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. It consists of five institutions: the World Bank, including the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA); the International Finance Corporation (IFC); the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA); and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). Working together in more than 100 countries, these institutions provide financing, advice, and other solutions that enable countries to address the most urgent challenges of development. For more information, please visit,, and


About IFC

IFC—a sister organization of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In fiscal year 2018, we delivered more than $23 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit



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