August 24, Kathmandu. The Bangladesh government has claimed that a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) will be signed within a month to buy electricity from the Upper Karnali Hydroelectric Project. The team led by Mohammad Habibur Rahman, secretary of the Ministry of Electricity, Energy and Mineral Resources of Bangladesh, who is visiting Nepal, has claimed to have a PPA with Gandhi Mallikarjun Rao (GMR), the promoter of Upper Karnali, within a month.
The team led by him came to Mathmadun on August 22 to participate in the meeting of the Secretary-level Joint Steering Committee (JSC) formed for energy cooperation between Nepal and Bangladesh. Joint Secretary level Joint Executive Committee (JWC) meeting is sitting on Wednesday. It is expected that Bangladesh will formally inform about this in the secretary-level meeting to be held on Thursday.
“In an informal conversation, the energy secretary of Bangladesh has said that there will be no more than one month delay in the PPA of 500 MW,” said an official of the Investment Board of Nepal.
According to him, GMR has recently agreed to sell 50 percent ownership of the project to the French company ‘EDF’, so now all the ways for the project to move forward will be open.
In the discussion with the government officials, Rahman informed that all the procedures for the PPA have been completed. Since India’s line has to be used to take electricity from Nepal, the Indian government also has to agree. Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) has already agreed to buy electricity from Upper Karnali.
After the construction of the project, GMR plans to sell 500 MW of electricity to Bangladesh through India’s NTPC Electricity Corporation (NVVN). A purchase rate of USD 7.7172 cents per unit was proposed for this.
GMR has offered Bangladesh to sell electricity from Upper Karnali to Bangladesh for 25 years. Bangladesh has planned to spend about 381.60 billion taka for this.
GMR has said that the remaining 292 megawatts of electricity after selling it to Bangladesh will be sold to the Indian government.
GMR has been claiming that the financial management of the project will be completed after the PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) is signed with Bangladesh. GMR is being criticized in Nepal for failing to raise investment for 13 years after being entrusted with the construction of Upper Karnali.
Source : Online Khabar