Germany is providing assistance to Tibetan farmers by helping them to build small hydro power plants. So far over 40,000 people have benefited from this in the country over the past five years.

In 1995 the German government agreed to provide DM7M (US$4.1M) by 2000, as well as equipment and technical assistance to repair small hydroelectric stations in Lhasa, Nyingchi and Shanna. The regional government is also allocating US$125,000 each year to match funds for the project, which has so far brought 17 power stations back to life. Another eight stations are expected to be operational by the end of 1998. The power stations are run by the farmers under contract, who can then sell the power.