A half-built Ismoili Somoni Hotel, which is  located on the Roudaki Avenue in downtown Dushanbe, caught fire today morning.  

“The cause of the fire is still unknown.  All fire engines we have were sent to the fire site,” an official source at the Interior Ministry Fire Directorate told Asia-Plus in an interview.

Recall, a long lasting construction of a 5-star “Ismoili Somoni” Hotel in Dushanbe was expected to be completed before the end of 2018 and to be put in commission this year.  Ismoili Somoni Hotel is being constructed for already thirteen years.

The head of the Committee for Architecture and Construction under the Government of Tajikistan, Jamshed Ahmadzoda, told reporters in Dushanbe on July 19 last year that he is sure that the construction of the Ismoili Somoni Hotel will be completed before the end of 2018 and it will be put in commission in 2019.  

He stressed that all building materials used for construction of this hotel meet the accepted quality standards.  Ahmadzoda denied information that the company constructing the hotel had been exempted from paying taxes as “baseless.”  “Special government’s decree is needed for exemption from customs duties and taxes,” Ahmadzoda said. 

Meanwhile, under the law on Tajikistan’s national budget for 2018, which was endorsed by the Majlisi Namoyandagon (Tajikistan’s lower house of parliament) on November 29, 2017, the company constructing Ismoili Somoni Hotel was exempted from paying value added tax (VAT) and customs duties once again.

The construction of Ismoili Somoni Hotel officially commenced in Dushanbe on March 15, 2006.  Tajik President Emomali Rahmon speaking at a groundbreaking ceremony for the hotel noted that it would be constructed with participation of the Tajik Closed Joint-Stock Company “Ismoili Somoni -- 21st Century” and the internationally known Turkish company “Kaynak Holding”.  Rahmon expressed confidence that the “Ismoili Somoni” Hotel would be finished in accordance with schedule in one and a half years.  

The “Kaynak Holding” top manager Mustafa Ozjan telling the hotel groundbreaking ceremony noted that the “Ismoili Somoni” Hotel would be a kind of the gate of Tajikistan through which foreign investments would flow into Tajikistan.  In 2006, the budget for construction of the hotel was reportedly estimated at 30 million U.S. dollars. 

Until the end of the last year, the hotel every year had been exempted from paying VAT and customs duties.   Ismoili Somoni Hotel is being built on orders from the President’s Executive Office by a company called Ismoili Somoni-21st Century.