Important agreement on transmission line and power trade in Nepal-India energy secretary level meeting

Kathmandu. The 10th meeting of Nepal-India energy secretary-level joint directorate committee has taken an important decision on the expansion of electricity transmission lines and trade promotion between the two countries.

Dinesh Kumar Ghimire, Secretary of the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, co-chaired by Alok Kumar, Secretary of the Ministry of Power, Government of India, held a meeting held on Saturday at Mount Abu, Rajasthan, India. This is an important achievement.

In the meeting, the recommendations made by the joint secretary-level joint working group between the two countries, which was concluded on Friday, were discussed. Kulman Ghising, Executive Director of Nepal Electricity Authority, informed that the meeting of the joint directorate committee for power generation, transmission and trade was a milestone.

Executive Director Ghising, who participated in the meeting, mentioned that India has positively accepted the proposal made by Nepal to export electricity to Bangladesh using India’s transmission grid.

“It has been decided to raise the proposal of the project to export electricity to Bangladesh to the Central Electricity Authority of India for approval, and the authority will conduct necessary tests and give consent within the scope of the electricity import and export (cross border) guidelines issued by the Government of India”, said Executive Director Ghisingh.

“Since we are currently getting approval for one year to sell electricity through competition in the day-ahead market of Indian Energy Exchange Limited (IX), we have proposed to extend it beyond one year to check and review it and to process the proposal we have submitted for the export of electricity for other additional projects. It has been agreed to approve the visit and the Indian side has informed that the proposal to participate in the real time market is being tested”, he said.

Executive Director Ghising said that the proposal for long-term electricity export from Nepal has been made on the basis of the Nepal-India intergovernmental agreement.

The meeting decided that while Nepal was only importing electricity from Tanakpur, it will now be able to export it as well. The meeting agreed to flow 70 megawatts of electricity from April to June and 80 megawatts of electricity from July to March through Tanakpur-Mahendranagar 132 kV single circuit transmission line.

“This has opened the way for the export of electricity from hydropower projects located in various districts of Sudurpaschim Province to the central transmission system of India during droughts”, Executive Director Ghising said, “Also, to find possible options to expand the capacity of the existing transmission line or to build a new transmission line of 200 kV. The Joint Technical Group has been instructed.”

In the proposal made by Nepal for the export of electricity to the Indian market through a transmission line of 32 KV and below capacity, India’s proposal is for inter-state system business and the transmission fee, leakage etc. is a subject, so it has been decided that the Central Electricity Authority will settle it in coordination with the Indian authorities.

For the import and export of electricity between Nepal and India, it has been decided to complete the 400 KV transmission lines of Inaruwa Purnia and New Lamki (Dododhara) and Bareilly by the year 2027 and 28 and 2028 and 29 respectively.

Nepal proposed to build the said transmission lines in the investment modality of the new Butwal-Gorakhpur transmission line. It has been agreed to finalize the investment modality soon. After the construction of these two transmission lines, there will be five transmission lines of 400 KV capacity for electricity import and export between the two countries.

It has been decided to conclude the new Butwal-Gorakhpur line implementation and transmission service contract soon and to complete the construction of the line by March 2025.

It has been decided to increase the electricity capacity being imported and exported from Dhalkebar Muzaffarpur 400 KV first international transmission line which is currently in operation from 600 MW to 800 MW.

The meeting instructed the joint technical team for study to exchange electricity from Dhalkebar Sitamarhi (India) 400 KV transmission line under construction of Arun 3rd hydropower project under construction by Sutlej Hydropower Corporation owned by Indian government in Sankhuwasabha.

Executive Director Ghising said, “The capacity of the said transmission line is about 2000 megawatts. It has been decided to study the technical aspects to use the capacity of about 1100 megawatts that will remain after the Kharun 3rd power is delivered. It will take some time to build the Lower Arun, which will be built by the Sutlej. I think it is positive that we can use the line until then.”

The Indian side drew the Nepali side’s serious attention to the construction of Arun 3rd transmission line in the districts of Bhojpur, Khotang, Udaipur, etc. In addition, due to the delay in the construction of the Koshi highway, the Indian side requested that the construction schedule be affected as large equipment such as power transformers could not be transported.

The Nepali side has promised to solve the problem and take necessary steps to create an environment to complete the project within the stipulated time. The construction of the project is targeted to be completed by March 2024.

It has been decided to complete the construction of the second circuit of Kataiya (Bihar)-Kushwa (Nepal) 132 kV transmission line within March 2023. India will build the line towards India at its own expense. It has been decided to complete the construction of the second circuit of Raxaul-Parwanipur 132 kV transmission line in April-May 2023. The line towards India will be built by India itself at its own expense.

It has been decided to complete the necessary work to be done at the Mainhiya (New Nautanuwa) substation in India to connect the Mainhia-Sampatiya 132 KV double circuit transmission line connecting Nepal and India’s Uttar Pradesh within September 2023. The work of the substation towards India will be built by India itself at its own expense.

Similarly, it has been decided to complete construction of Nanpara 9 Bharat 0-Kohalpur 1132 KV double circuit transmission line within January 2024. The line towards India will be built by India itself at its own expense.

A Memorandum of Understanding with India’s NTPC will soon be signed to provide consulting services and capacity building in the solar and other energy sectors in Nepal. In the meeting, it was decided to cooperate bilaterally in the field of green hydrogen. It has been decided to hold the 11th meeting of the Joint Committee of Directors in Chitwan after 6 months.

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