[QODLink]
Central & South Asia
Energy ambitions fuel Central Asian rivalry
Construction on new hydroelectric dam stirs Tajik-Uzbek tensions in dispute over shared natural resources.
Last Modified: 07 Apr 2012 07:03

Tajikistan has accused neighbouring Uzbekistan of imposing an economic blockade in a dispute over shared natural resources between the former Soviet states.

This blockade includes ending all freight at the border with Uzbekistan and a cut-off of vital gas supplies by Uzbekistan to the Tajik nation.

The mountainous state wants to ramp up construction of hyrdroelectric plants and store water from the nation's 25,000 rivers to power them, but downstream, Uzbekistan says the plans by Tajikistan would cut off a water supply they rely on for irrigation.

As part of the Soviet Union the neighbouring republics freely shared their resources, but since independence in 1991 both nations have pursued individual energy programs.

The construction of the Roghun hydroelectric dam in Tajikistan - at a projected 13b kWh of electricity per year, officials say it could one day make Tajikistan an energy exporter in the region - has raised fears that the blocking of Vakhsh River would greatly reduce water supplies to farms in Uzbekistan.

Al Jazeera's Robin Forestier-Walker reports from inside the Nurek hydroelectric station on Tajikistan's ambitions of energy independence.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.