Budhi Gandaki Project: French company selected as consultant

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    KATHMANDU, SEP 22 –

    The Nepal Electricity Authority has decided to appoint France’s Tractwell Engineering as consultant for the 600-MW Budhi Gandaki Hydropower Project. The company will receive Rs 920 million for the job.

    Budhi Gandaki HEP Proposed Dam Site
    Budhi Gandaki HEP Proposed Dam Site

    After conducting a financial and technical analysis of the company, the NEA board had decided a month ago to hire the company.

    NEA officials said the proposal has been forwarded to Energy Secretary Hari Ram Koirala for final approval. “Once approved by the energy secretary, the company will prepare a detailed project report, determine the contractor and the model of investment for the project,” said a NEA source, adding the company will also prepare tender documents.

    Krishna Prasad Dulal, an NEA board member, who has been appointed as resource person for communication with Tractwell, said the company will complete the assigned task within 30 months. NEA had begun the consultant hiring process last year. The project site lies between Gorkha and Dhading districts.

    Although the feasibility study of the project was completed in 1984, the project failed to draw interest of foreign donors and private power developers. According to estimates, project would cost $1.50 billion. According to the feasibility study, the project is one of the most favoured hydropower projects due to its high potential benefits and close proximity to the Capital.

    The storage-type hydropower project has various advantages like storage of water and energy, year-round energy production, instant generating capacity, flexibility in providing base-load and peak-load services and employment generation. The reservoir of the Budhi Gandaki will have an area of 50sqkm, which will displace around 10,000 people. The project will affect the residents of 18 VDCs — eight in Dhading and 10 in Gorkha.

    Source : The Kathmandu Post