Chinese CITIC to expand Uzbek soda plant's capacity
Uzbekistan, Tashkent, Sept.23 / Trend, D. Azizov /
Uzbekistan will attract China's Citic Pacific Ltd. to expand capacity of Kungrad Soda Plant (Autonomous Republic of Karakalpakstan, northern Uzbekistan), a source in the Uzbek government told Trend on Friday.
According to the source, the State Joint-Stock Company Uzkhimprom and Chinese company signed a memorandum of cooperation, which envisages implementation of a project to increase plant capacity by 1.5 times - up to 150,000 tons of soda ash per year by 2015.
The contract between CITIC and Uzkhimprom is expected to be signed in the first half of 2012.
At present, the Chinese company and specialists from the design institute "Uzkhimesanoatloyiha", which is included in Uzkhimprom, is developing the preliminary feasibility study at an initial cost $ 50 million, the source said. The project financing is envisaged via a loan from China Exim Bank and the Uzbek side's funds.
Kungrad soda plant, with a current design capacity of 100,000 tons of soda ash per year, was commissioned in August 2006 by China's Citic Pacific Ltd. and Uzkhimprom. The total project cost was $100 million.
Citic was engaged in the design and "turnkey" construction of the technological side of the enterprise at a cost of $32.3 million and funded at the expense of the Chinese Industrial and Commercial Bank's loan under insurance coverage of China Export and Credit Insurance Corporation (90 percent of contract cost) and a loan from the Uzbek Uzpromstroybank (10 percent of contract cost).