Uzbek Fund to allocate $25 mln to expand soda plant

Uzbekistan, Tashkent, Dec.29 / Trend, D. Azizov /

Reconstruction and Development Fund of Uzbekistan (RDFU) will allocate a loan worth $25 million to the state joint-stock company Uzkhimprom for a project to expand capacity of Kungrad Soda Plant (autonomous republic of Karakalpakstan, north of Uzbekistan), a source in the government told Trend on Thursday.

The project with total cost of $52 million, which is planned to be implemented by late 2013, envisages increasing the capacity of Kungrad Soda Plant by 1.5 times - up to 150,000 tons per year.

In addition to RDFU loan, the project will be financed through a loan from the Chinese Exim Bank in the amount of $25 million and Uzkhimprom funds in the amount of $2 million.
Expanding the capacity of the soda plant will be carried out by increasing limestone extraction on the Dzhamansay open pit and technical salt on the Barsakelmes field in Karakalpakstan.

Kungrad soda plant with the design capacity of 100,000 tons of soda ash annually was put into operation in 2006. 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).

This plant is the only enterprise producing soda ash in Central Asia.

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