India agrees to import more electricity

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Kathmandu: India has agreed to purchase electricity for additional projects in Nepal. According to Chiranjeevi Chataut, Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, India has reached such an agreement at the ninth meeting of the Joint Steering Committee (JSC) of the Nepal-India Energy Secretary level Joint Mechanism held in Kathmandu on Thursday.

The two sides also agreed to form a joint task force to study the construction of 132 kV transmission line for power connectivity of Nepal with the Indian state of Bengal. Similarly, it has been decided to form a study task force to build a hydropower project with joint investment between Nepal and India.

The joint secretary Chataut also informed that an agreement has been reached to open a joint company within two months to build the New Butwal-Gorakhpur 400 kV inter-country transmission line. Nepal had started selling electricity on the Indian Energy Exchange (IEX) in the concept of ‘Day Ahead Market’ from 3rd October 2021. Nepal is seeking permission to sell more than 850 MW of electricity from 8 different projects in India as soon as the way is opened to sell electricity in IEX. But India had earlier given permission to buy electricity only from the 24 MW Trishuli and 14 MW Devighat hydropower projects. According to Chataut, India has also agreed to buy power from Upper Tamakoshi, Kaligandaki, Marsyangdi, Madhya Marsyangdi, Upper Bhotekoshi and Chameliya hydropower projects proposed by Nepal.

Similarly, the JSC meeting has agreed to supply 600 MW of electricity from the Dhalkewar-Muzaffarpur transmission line, which is the Nepal-India interstate transmission line. It was also agreed to complete the construction of substations and other infrastructure by 2023 to increase the capacity of the transmission line, said Chataut.