The electric power industry in Kazakhstan includes the following sectors:
• electricity generation;
• electricity transmission;
• electricity supply;
• electricity consumption;
• other activities in electric power industry.
Electricity generation sector
Electricity in Kazakhstan is generated by 179 power plants of various forms of ownership. As on 01 January 2021 the total installed capacity of power plants in Kazakhstan was 23621,6 MW and available capacity is 20078,6 MW.
The power plants are branched into power plants of national importance, power plants of industrial importance and those of regional importance.
The power plants of national importance are the large thermal power plants generating and selling electricity to consumers at the electricity wholesale market of Kazakhstan:
• Ekibastuz GRES-1 LLP named after B.G. Nurzhanov;
• Ekibastuz GRES-2 Power Plant JSC;
• Power plant of EEC JSC, ERG, Eurasian Group;
• Main distribution power station Topar LLP;
• Zhambyl GRES JSC named after T.I. Baturov,
And large hydro power plants used as auxiliary units and to control load schedule profile of Kazakhstan UPS:
• Bukhtarma Hydro Power Complex of Kazzinc LLP,
• AEС Ust-Kamenogorsk HPP LLP,
• AEС Shulbinsk HPP LLP.
The power plants of industrial importance are the combined heat power plants (CHPP), which supply heat and electric power to large industrial enterprises and nearby populated areas:
• CHPP-3 Karaganda Energocenter LLP;
• CHPP-PVS, CHPP-2 of Arcelor Mittal Temirtau JSC;
• CHPP of SSGPO JSC, ERG, Eurasian Group;
• Balkhash TPP, Zhezkazgan CHPP of Kazakhmys Energy LLP;
• CHPP-1 of Aluminium of Kazakhstan JSC, ERG, Eurasian Group and others.
The power plants of regional importance are the CHPPs integrated with the territories, supplying electricity through the networks of regional electricity network companies and power transmission organisations and heat to the towns nearby.
Electricity Transmission Sector
Electric networks in Kazakhstan include 0.4-1,150 kV substations, switchgears and electricity transmission lines connecting them to transmit and/or distribute electricity.
The backbone grid in Kazakhstan UPS is the National Power Grid (NPG) that provides electric connections between the regions of the country and with the power systems of the neighbouring countries (the Russian Federation, the Kyrgyz Republic and the Republic of Uzbekistan) and deliver electricity from the power plants to the wholesale consumers. KEGOC owns 220 kV and above substations, switchgears, interregional and/or interstate transmission lines being a part of the NPG including lines used for connection of power plants.
Regional power networks provide electrical connections within regions and power transmission to retail consumers. Electric networks of regional level belong to and are being operated by the Regional Electric Network Companies (REC).
The power transmission companies provide contract-based electricity transmission services using their own or managed (rent, lease, trust management and other types of use) electric networks for the wholesale and retail consumers or power supplying companies.
Power Supply Sector
The Kazakhstan electricity market power supply sector includes power supply organisations, which purchase electricity directly from power generators or at the centralized auctions and further sell it to the end retail consumers. Some of power supply organisations have a role of the 'guaranteed power supplier'.
Kazakhstan Electricity Market
Electricity market is divided into wholesale and retail markets, the heating energy market is retail only.
The System Operator, regional electric network companies and other entities owning electric networks shall ensure non-discriminatory access to the electricity market for all market players as prescribed by the state regulator of the natural monopolies and regulated markets.
The relations arising out of generation, transmission and consumption in the electric power industry on the electricity or heat market shall be regulated by the relevant contracts.
The functional design of the wholesale electricity market in Kazakhstan includes:
• market of decentralized purchase and sale of electricity (bilateral contracts of electricity purchase and sale);
• centralized electricity market, which is based on purchase and sale of electricity for short-term (spot-trade), mid-term (week, month) and long-term (quarter, year) period;
• real-time balancing market operating for physical and subsequent financial settlement of hourly imbalances arising within the operating day between actual and contractual generation and consumption of electricity in the unified power system of Kazakhstan;
• system and ancillary service market, where the System Operator renders the system services and acquires the ancillary services from the Kazakhstan electric power market entities in order to ensure compliance with the state standards established for reliable operation of Kazakhstan UPS and electric power quality.
• capacity market (launching on 01 January 2019).
Relations arising between the participants of the wholesale electricity market of Kazakhstan shall be regulated by the civil laws of Kazakhstan, the Rules of organization and functioning of the wholesale electricity market of Kazakhstan, other regulatory legal acts and contracts between the participants of the wholesale electricity market.
Power generating companies generate and sell electricity at the wholesale market of Kazakhstan if they meet the following conditions:
1) they have licenses as required by the laws of Kazakhstan;
2) they have access to the national and(or) regional electric network;
3) they supply at least 1 megawatt (further MW) of electricity of daily average (base) capacity to the wholesale market and have commercial metering systems, telecommunications harmonized with the System Operator's systems.
Power generating companies connected to the national power grid can have access to the national power grid if they have contracts with the System Operator:
1) for technical dispatch of generation/consumption of electricity in the Unified Power System of Kazakhstan;
2) for balancing of generation/consumption of electricity in the Unified Power System of Kazakhstan;
The power generating companies connected to the electric networks of REC companies can have access to the national power grid if they have contract with the System Operator for rendering by the latter the services on technical dispatch of generation/consumption of electricity in the UPS Kazakhstan.
Consumers shall conclude electricity purchase and sale contracts at the price, volume and supply conditions at the decentralized electricity market in accordance with the Civil Code.
Electricity consumers may participate in the wholesale electricity market if they meet the following conditions:
1) they have access to the national and (or) regional electric network;
2) they purchase at least 1 MW of daily average (base) capacity at the wholesale electricity market and have the commercial metering systems, telecommunication systems harmonized with the systems installed by the System Operator.
The electricity consumers connected to the national power grid can have access to the national power grid if they have contracts with the System Operator:
1) for transmission of electricity via national power grid;
2) for technical dispatch of the imported electricity (in case of electricity import);
3) for balancing of generation/consumption of electricity in the Unified Power System of Kazakhstan;
The electricity consumers connected to the electric networks of the REC can have access to the national power grid if they meet the following conditions:
1) they have a contract with the System Operator for transmission of electricity via national power grid;
2) they have a contract with the System Operator for technical dispatch of the imported electricity (in case of electricity import);
3) they have access to the regional electric network.
Power supplying companies can participate at the wholesale electricity market of Kazakhstan if they meet the following conditions:
1) they have license for the right of electricity purchase to supply electricity;
2) they have access to the national and (or) regional electric network;
3) they meet the requirements on supply/consumption of at least 1 MW of daily average (base) capacity from the wholesale electricity market and have commercial metering systems, telecommunication systems harmonized with the main systems installed by the System Operator.
The power generating companies can have access to the national power grid if they meet the following conditions:
1) they have contracts with the System Operator for transmission of electricity via national power grid identifying electricity consumers and (or) for technical dispatch of the imported electricity (in case of electricity import or acquisition of such services) with the list of electricity consumers;
2) they have contracts with the System Operator for balancing of electricity generation/consumption in the UPS of Kazakhstan with the list of electricity consumers and/or power generating companies;
3) they have access to the regional electric networks their clients are connected to a regional electric network.
Electricity purchase transactions on the retail market are based on the power supply contracts between consumers and the energy supplying organisations.
Electricity Market Operators
The System Operator of Kazakhstan UPS is KEGOC JSC (Order of the Ministry of Energy of the Republic of Kazakhstan No. 61 dated 17 October 2014) and its functions are to:
1) provide system service of electricity transmission in the national power grid on the contractual basis; service the grid and maintain its operational availability;
2) render technical dispatch services to perform centralized operational dispatch control of Kazakhstan UPS pursuant to the contract including compilation of actual balances and daily schedule of electricity generation/consumption;
3) ensure the reliable operation of Kazakhstan UPS;
4) render power control services;
5) render balancing electricity generation and consumption services;
6) provide financial settlement of electricity imbalances in the manner established by the laws of Kazakhstan;
7) quantify, structure and distribute capacity reserves between power generating companies and engage capacity reserves in the unified power system of Kazakhstan;
8) manage the operation of the real-time balancing electricity market, the market of system and ancillary services;
9) interact with power systems of neighbouring states in terms of management and ensuring stability of parallel operation conditions and regulation of electric capacity;
10) provide technical and methodical guidance for development of the unified informational system, commercial metering system, related relay protection and emergency automation devices for all participants of the wholesale electricity market;
11) ensure equal conditions of access to the national power grid for the participants of the wholesale electricity market;
12) provide the participants of the wholesale electricity market of Kazakhstan with the information except for any commercially sensitive data or any other secret protected by the law;
13) coordinate the dates of the repair windows of the main equipment of power plants, substations, transmission lines, relay protection devices and emergency control automatics, process management systems and ensure their availability;
14) participate in planning of the hydro power plants operation subject to their water economy schedule and operational modes of Kazakhstan UPS;
15) develop electricity and capacity balance forecasts;
16) manage the operation of the capacity market;
17) certify generating unit's capacity;
18) quarterly provide information about agreed capacity delivery conditions to the authorized body;
19) perform other functions as defined in the laws of the Republic of Kazakhstan promoting the use of renewable energy sources.
Pursuant to the standing Law of Kazakhstan 'On Electric Power Industry', the balancing electricity market (BEM) of Kazakhstan was launched in the simulation mode on 01 January 2008.
Link on the website of the balancing electricity market system: https://bems.kegoc.kz/emwebkegoc/
To support the operation of the BEM in accordance with the order No. 807 of KEGOC dated 26 December 2007, Energoinform (reincorporated in 2010 as Energoinform JSC) was designated as the financial settlement centre. The centralized dispatch control of Kazakhstan UPS is performed by KEGOC's branch the National Dispatch Centre of the System Operator (NDC SO). The operational and dispatch control in Kazakhstan UPS is functioning through the direct operational subordination of nine regional dispatch centres (RDC) being the structural subdivisions of KEGOC branches - Interconnection Electric Networks, to NDC SO.
The centralised trade market ensures open non-discriminatory access of all participants to the electricity market and generate an objective indicator of the current electricity price. KOREM JSC (Kazakhstan Operator of Electric Power and Electric Energy) as an Operator of the Centralized Trade Market is responsible for operation of the centralized trade market (Order No. 54 dated 04 March 2004 of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources).