The Government of Tajikistan plans to settle with external creditors, who  purchased public bonds (Eurobonds) issued by Tajikistan in September last year for completion of construction of the Roghun hydroelectric power plant (HPP), until 20208, according to the Ministry of Finance (MoF). 

An official source at a MoF says Tajikistan will pay off debt interest until 2025 and the principal debt within the next three years (2025-2028).

“To-date, some 200 million U.S. dollars (USD) of those funds have been sent for construction of the Roghun HPP,” said the source.  “Of this amount, 134 million USD have been paid to the general contractor in prepayment and some 65 million USD have been sent for construction of the Roghun HPP.” 

Recall, Tajikistan has appointed Citigroup and Raiffeisen Bank International as joint lead managers for a debut US dollar Eurobond.  Tajikistan has raised $500 million with its first international bond issue to help fund the construction of the Roghun hydropower plant.

Tajikistan's 10-year bonds were placed on Sept. 7 with a yield of 7.125%. The bankers handling the deal had originally signaled a yield of 8% but demand was strong, with bids exceeding $4 billion.  S&P Global Poor's gave the bond a B- rating while Moody's Investor Service put it as B3.

According to the data from the National Bank of Tajikistan (NBT), the public bonds were sold to managing funds (85 percent), hedge funds (9 percent) as well as banks and other financial institutions (6 percent).

Tajikistan stemmed the flow of the Vakhsh River for construction of the Roghun hydroelectric power plant (HPP) mega-dam in late October 2016.  Explosions were used on October 29, 2016 to block the main riverbed of the Vakhsh River, marking the first substantial step toward building the dam.  The work on the Vakhsh River has not affected existing hydroelectric facilities downstream.

Roghun HPP is an embankment dam in the preliminary stages of construction on the Vakhsh River in southern Tajikistan.  It is one of the planned hydroelectric power plants of Vakhsh Cascade.

The Roghun HPP was first proposed in 1959 and a technical scheme was developed by 1965.  Construction began in 1976 but the project was frozen after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

An agreement on finishing the construction was signed between Tajikistan and Russia in 1994; however, as the agreement was not implemented, it was denounced by Tajikistan parliament.

In October 2004, Tajikistan signed an agreement with Russia's RusAl aluminum company, according to which RusAl agreed to complete the Roghun facility and rebuild the Tursunzoda aluminum smelter.  In August 2007, Tajikistan formally revoked a contract with RusAl, accusing it of failing to fulfill the contract.

In April 2008, Tajikistan founded OJSC NBO Roghun with an authorized capital of 116 million somoni for completing the construction of the Roghun HPP.  Current authorized capital of OJSC NBO Roghun reportedly amounts to more than 12 billion somoni.

To raise funds to complete construction of the Roghun HPP the government started to sell shares in Roghun to people on January 6, 2010.  Tajikistan has reportedly issued 6 billion somoni worth of Roghun shares.  The sale of Roghun shares has reportedly earned the government 980 million somoni.    

In response to the request of the bordering countries and especially Uzbekistan, the World Bank has financed the Techno-Economic Assessment Study (TEAS) conducted by consortium of Coyne et Bellier, Electroconsult and IPA Energy + Water Economics, and Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) conducted by Poyry. The ESIA was published on June 16, 2014 and the TEAS in July 2014.  Overall, the ESIA stated that “Most impacts are rather small and easily mitigated, if mitigation is required at all.” and that “There is no impact of the category “strong negative, mitigation not possible,” which would have to be considered as a no-go for the project.”

In 2016, construction duties on Roghun were assigned to Italian company Salini Impregilo.  It is estimated that the project will cost $3.9 billion to complete.

The project is broken down into four components, with the most expensive one involving the building of a 335-meter-high rockfill dam — the tallest in the world — which will entail costs of around $1.95 billion.

If built as planned, the dam will be the tallest in the world at 335 meters and have a capacity of 3600 MW.

Tajik President Emomali Rahmon on January 31 received Mr. Pietro Salini, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Salini Impregilo.

After a meeting with the Tajik head of state, Mr. Pietro Salini told reporters that he promised Emomali Rahmon to introduce the first unit of the Roghun HPP into operation on November 16, 2018.