The FINANCIAL — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is financing the purchase of up to 100 new buses for the largest city in northern Tajikistan, Khujand, a regional capital with a population of 165,000.
The EBRD will provide a loan of US$ 17.5 million in two tranches to the municipal company in charge of all modes of public transport, State Communal Enterprise (SCE) Khujand Public Transport, under a sovereign guarantee. An investment grant totalling US$ 8.5 million for the same project will be provided by the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund and an international donor.
The financing will enable the city to purchase up to 100 low-floor buses, finance the modernisation of the depot and the supply of maintenance equipment, and implement a new ticketing system, according to EBRD.
The city of Khujand will sign a Project Support Agreement with the EBRD, under which the municipality will provide SCUE Khujand Public Transport with assistance to implement the project.
Ekaterina Miroshnik, EBRD Director for Infrastructure in Russia and Central Asia, said: “Khujand is one of the oldest cities in the world. But it is one with an ambitious modernisation plan. After investing in better water, wastewater, solid waste management and safer air travel for Khujand, we are now proud to contribute to its public transport system upgrade.”
Earlier this year, the EBRD opened an office in Khujand dedicated to helping local small and medium-sized companies gain access to business advice and know-how.
To date, the EBRD has invested over €600 million in various sectors of Tajikistan’s economy.