Some 20,000 needy families in Uzbekistan will receive free solar panels with a capacity of 1.5−2 kW, minister of energy Jurabek Mirzamahmudov said in an interview (in Uzbek) with UzReport TV.

“Currently, we are preparing this program. Households increase consumption [of energy] during the summer… We started work with partners in this direction,” he said.

The capacity of the panels should be enough to cover the basic needs in electricity — around 200 kWh per month, Mirzamahmudov added.

The minister noted that Saudi ACWA Power is a partner in installing solar panels at social objects like schools and hospitals.

From 1 May, electricity and gas prices were significantly increased in Uzbekistan for the first time since August 2019. The base tariff (within the social norm) for 1 kWh of electricity increased 52.5% (up to 200 kWh per month) and for 1 cubic meter of gas by 71% (up to 500 cu. m per month during the heating period and 100 cu. m in other months). With increased consumption, tariffs rise manyfold.

The government will pay compensation to needy families to help them manage the costs during the heating period.

In September 2022, president Shavkat Mirziyoyev had ordered regional administrations to provide low-income families with compact water boilers and small solar panels (up to 1 kW).