17 Nov, 2023 : The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has instructed the construction company to accelerate the completion of the 220-132 KV substation at Bahrbise in Sindhupalchowk district. The substation is crucial for connecting the electricity generated by the 102 MW Madhyabhotekoshi hydroelectric project to the national grid.
A high-level team from the NEA, led by Managing Director Kulman Ghising and Deputy Managing Director of Project Management Directorate Tara Prasad Pradhan, visited the construction site on Thursday to assess the progress of the project. The team discussed the challenges faced by the construction company, the status of equipment supply, and the revised completion schedule.
“We are committed to connecting the Madhyabhotekoshi hydroelectric project to the national grid as soon as possible,” said Ghising. “The substation construction is critical for this purpose, and we urge the construction company to expedite the remaining work.”
The construction of the substation is currently about 90% complete. The power transformers have been installed, and the equipment in the control room has been delivered. However, some connection work and finishing work on the civil side remain to be completed.
The NEA has expressed concern over the delay in the completion of the substation project. The original completion date was January 2023, but the project has been pushed back due to the poor performance of the construction company, a joint venture of Chinese companies Guangxi Transmission and Substation Construction and Shenzhen Claw Electronics.
The NEA has warned the construction company that it will face penalties if the substation is not completed on time. The authority is also considering terminating the contract and awarding it to another company.
In the meantime, the NEA has made temporary arrangements for the electricity flow of Madhyabhotekoshi. However, the permanent solution requires the completion of the 220-132 KV substation.
The NEA has also requested Shivshree Hydropower, the promoter company of the 22 MW Upper Chaku A hydroelectric project, to immediately start the construction of a 132 KV single circuit transmission line from Lamosanghu substation to Bahrbise. The company has all the necessary equipment for the transmission line, but it has not yet started construction due to local objections.
The NEA is also constructing the Tamakoshi-Kathmandu transmission line and substation to connect the electricity generated by the hydroelectric projects of the Tamakoshi and Sunkoshi rivers to the national grid. The project is being funded by concessional loans from the Asian Development Bank.
The NEA has urged all stakeholders to cooperate in the timely completion of these critical infrastructure projects to ensure a reliable and sustainable supply of electricity in Nepal.