Despite globally progressing energy transition, the deployment of non-hydropower renewable energy (NHRE) in Central Asia is moderate and varies by country. This paper aims to explain why Central Asian countries with significant challenges in the energy sector are least engaged in NHRE development. In doing so, the paper first reviews scholarly work on renewable energy (RE) deployment in developing countries. For assessing the NHRE development status in Central Asian countries, the paper adopts a two-stage analytical framework. First, it assesses the current situation in these states' energy sectors in connection to their economic growth and development, environmental sustainability and energy security. Then, it analyses the preparedness of the national energy sectors for NHRE diffiusion in six dimensions: Structure of energy sector, RE regulation, institutions and governance, capital and investment, infrastructure and business environment, and human capital. Based on the results of the two-stage analysis, the paper argues that more advanced economically and institutionally countries are more likely to commence NHRE development.
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