June 28, 2010 / 1:14 PM / 8 years ago

Kazakhstan plans major power plant by 2015

ALMATY, June 28 (Reuters) - Kazakh and South Korean firms plan to complete construction by 2015 of a major new power plant to help meet an electricity shortage in southern Kazakhstan, the companies involved in the project said on Monday.

Kazakh state holding firm Samruk-Kazyna last year signed a deal with Korea Electric Power Corp (KEPCO) (015760.KS) and construction company Samsung C&T to build and operate the Balkhash coal-fired power plant.

The project has been valued at between $2.5 billion and $4.5 billion. London-listed copper major Kazakhmys (KAZ.L) is also a shareholder in the project.

The joint venture partners said in a statement that they had participated in a teleconference on Monday with Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev to mark the official ceremony for the start of construction.

The power plant will serve a region that is home to more than 40 percent of Kazakhstan’s population.

KEPCO and Samsung C&T will hold a combined 65 percent stake in the project. Samruk-Kazyna will hold 25 percent plus one share and Kazakhmys the rest of the shares.

THe plant will have power generating capacity of 1,320 megawatts, which can be increased to 2,640 megawatts. (Reporting by Olga Orininskaya; editing by James Jukwey)

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