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On 21 February 2014, during his speech at the plenary session of the Parliament of Georgia, the leader of the Parliamentary Majority, Davit Saganelidze, stated:  “The hydroelectric power plants of Larsi, Bakhvi, Aragvi and Akhmeta are already functioning. Their total capacity equals 45 megawatts [MW]. Construction of one of the biggest hydropower cascades (with the capacity of 400 MW) has already started. A wind electric power plant project (with the capacity of 20 MW at the first stage) has been initiated for the first time in Georgia. Construction of a thermal power station with the capacity of 230 MW is in progress in Gardabani. Last year, foreign direct investment [FDI] was increased by 7% if compared to the previous year and, overall, equalled GEL 146 million only in the energy sphere.”

FactCheck

took interest in the accuracy of the aforementioned statement and decided to verify the facts.

On 24 January 2014, the members of the Georgian Government opened the Larsi power station. Its installed capacity [1]

is 19 MW while its annual output equals 100 million kilowatt-hours [kWh]. The Peri company started the construction of the Larsi power station in the Kazbegi Region in 2011. Based upon the information of the Ministry of Energy of Georgia, a total of USD 20 million was invested in the construction of the abovementioned power station.

On 5 December 2013, the Minister of Energy of Georgia opened the Bakhvi HPP 3. The installed capacity of this power plant comprises 9.8 MW and the annual output is 38 million kWh.

The list of Georgian hydroelectric power plants displayed on the website of the Ministry of Energy of Georgia does not mention the Aragvi and Akhmeta power stations while the Ministry informed FactCheck

that both of the abovementioned power stations are already functioning.

The list of investment projects published on the website of the Ministry of Energy contains the Shuakhevi HPP cascade project. The foundation for the Shuakhevi HPP was laid by the former Prime Minister of Georgia, Bidzina Ivanishvili, and the Minister of Energy of Georgia, Kakha Kaladze, on 16 September 2013. The installed capacity of the abovementioned power plant is 178 MW while its annual output equals 445.1 million kWh. The project encompasses the construction of two dams and water reservoirs. According to the information of the Ministry of Energy, at the same time, investors are starting the construction of the Skhalta HPP which is a part of the abovementioned cascade. The installed capacity of the Skhalta HPP will be 5.8 MW with the annual output of 20.8 kWh. The investment cost of both projects is USD 300 million. The construction of these power stations will be completed by the second half of 2016.

In addition, the construction of the Koromkheti and Khertvisi power plants is also planned. The installed capacity of the Koromkheti HPP will equal 150 MW while the annual output will be 463 kWh. In the case of the Khertvisi HHP, the installed capacity will comprise 65 MW with annual output of 239 kWh.

FactCheck

verified Davit Saganelidze’s statement concerning the wind electric power plant being constructed for the first time in Georgia. The Ministry of Energy and the Foundation of Energy Development of Georgia are working together to construct the Kartli wind power plant. The power plant is situated near the city of Gori. This is a pilot project being constructed by state funding and encompassing the construction of a power plant with the capacity of up to 20 MW. Ten turbines will be located on the territory of the power plant connected with each other via underground lines that in turn will be connected with the Gori substation with the capacity of 220 KW. The investment cost of the project comprises USD 30 million.

Davit Saganelidze’s assertion about the thermal power station also proved to be accurate. In January 2014 the construction of the combined Gardabani thermal power station was initiated whose installed capacity will comprise 230 MW. The investment cost of the project is USD 220 million. The funds are allocated by the Partnership Foundation and the Georgian Oil and Gas Corporation.

As for foreign direct investments [FDI] in the energy sphere, based upon the preliminary data of the National Statistics Office of Georgia, in 2013 FDI comprised USD 198 million and is an amount which exceeds the similar data (US 179 million) of the previous year by 9.6%. According to Saganelidze, FDI in the energy sphere was increased by 7% and comprised USD 146 million. The National Statistics Office of Georgia published the abovementioned preliminary data on 21 March while Saganelidze made his statement on 21 February. Presumably, the slight inaccuracy in numbers is caused by the fact that Saganelidze presented the preliminary data that was incorrectly calculated and incomplete. Obviously, he would not have any motivation to deliberately cut the data.

Conclusion The research conducted by FactCheck

showed that in 2013-2014 the hydroelectric power plants of Larsi, Bakhvi, Aragvi and Akhmeta in fact started to operate. Their total installed capacity equals 46.9 MW. In 2013 the construction of the Shuakhevi HPP cascade was also initiated with the total installed capacity of 398.8 MW.

Based upon the information of the Ministry of Energy of Georgia, the construction of the Kartli wind power plant is in progress near the city of Gori. The installed capacity of this plant is supposed to be 200 MW. This is the first wind power plant ever to be constructed with funds allocated by the state. Moreover, the construction of a combined thermal power station with the installed capacity of 230 MW has also started.

According to the preliminary data of the National Statistics Office of Georgia, FDI comprised USD 198 million in 2013 in Georgia and exceeds the indicator of the previous year by 9.6%.

Therefore, FactCheck concludes that the statement of Davit Saganelidze:  “The hydroelectric power plants of Larsi, Bakhvi, Aragvi and Akhmeta are already functioning. Their total capacity equals 45 megawatts [MW]. Construction of one of the biggest hydropower cascades (with the capacity of 400 MW) has already started. A wind electric power plant project (with the capacity of 20 MW at the first stage) has been initiated for the first time in Georgia. Construction of a thermal power station with the capacity of 230 MW is in progress in Gardabani. Last year, foreign direct investment [FDI] was increased by 7% if compared to the previous year and, overall, equalled GEL 146 million only in the energy sphere,” is TRUE.


[1]

Installed capacity is the energy generated in one second. Therefore, the power station with the capacity of one MW generates one megajoule electricity in a second.