During the period of December 3-6, 2002, very cold temperatures were recorded in Tajikistan (-18 °C). Gas supply from Uzbekistan was greatly reduced and the district heating system was shut down, forcing the population to switch to electricity for heating and cooking needs. As a result, the distribution system in these cities was overloaded and about 30 to 40 km of underground cables and more than 47 MV/LV transformers were damaged.
The Mayor of Dushanbe contacted the local Asian Development Bank (ADB) office for assistance. ADB is actively involved in the energy sector in Tajikistan, and in turn addressed a request for the Global Sustainable Electricity Partnership’s (GSEP) assistance. The GSEP agreed to share its technical expertise in the field of electricity distribution and provide emergency assistance to the city of Dushanbe in determining its immediate rehabilitation needs.
A fact-finding mission to Dushanbe was conducted in June 2003 to establish a technical assessment of the work to be done and the material needed. In November 2003, a final mission was conducted to complete human capacity building to Barki Tajik, the public utility, in the formulation of a call for tender for these works.