PDA for Arun III to be reached during SAARC Summit

    316

    Power development agreementsKATHMANDU, Nov 5: A Project Development Agreement (PDA) is all set to be reached with the Sutjal Hydro Power Company, the promoter of the 900 megawatt Arun III Hydro Power Project.
    The decision for the agreement was reached after a two-day extensive meeting between the Investment Board and Arun III Hydro Power Project promoter. The Board had held the agreement-pending meeting with Sutjal Company on Tuesday and Wednesday.

    Nepal will benefit 21.09 per cent free electricity while the Company will also provide share to the local residents.

    An agreement reached in 2008 does not mention anything on the provision of shares and information relating to the amount of share to be discharged among the locals has not been informed. According to a source, the locals will be given six per cent of the shares.

    In a Public Hearing Programme held by the Board at Sankhuwasabha recently the local public had demanded shares while calling for special attention to development of physical infrastructure in the area.

    As per the demand of the locals, the Company has agreed to provide 20 units of electricity in the affected areas for next 25 years free of cost. The Nepal government will provide the data relating to the areas entitled for free electricity in coordination with the local body.

    The promoter has also agreed to carryout reform works in road infrastructure, canals and on socio-economic aspect, according to Board´s Spokesperson Ghanashyam Ojha.

    The Company will also provide compensation amount and land which the government will distribute. Agreement will be reached so as to not allow any grievances to exist in the local level even if the locals have to be resettled.

    Spokesperson Ojha said that another important agreement had been reached with a hydro power project promoter after a recent PDA with the Indian Grandi Mallikarjun Rao (GMR) for Upper Karnali Hydro Power Project. He added that the agreement would prove to be phenomenal in development of hydro power development in the country.

    The meeting was participated by the Board´s Executive Official Radesh Pant led Nepali team comprising of representatives from Energy and Finance Ministries while high officials led by Satjal Hydro Power Company representative RK Agrawal took part.

    “The meeting has ended conclusively with agreement on addressing all demands raised by the locals and bringing the project to a conclusion on time,” Spokesperson Ojha said.

    Preparations are underway for holding the signing ceremony in the presence of Nepali Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and Indian PM Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the 18th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) for the project estimated to cost a total of Rs. 150 billion.

    Nepal will profit Rs. 3 trillion and 62 billion in cash in 25 years from the project. Nepal will also benefit from Rs. 80 billion in income tax, Rs. One trillion and 66 billion in royalty before the project is returned to Nepal government. Nepal will gain free 197 megawatt from the total 900 MW.

    Ojha said that a formal letter will be sent to the Company on Thursday. The Board meeting will approve the agreement after which it will be presented to the cabinet for final decision. The Board´s Chairman is Prime Minister. RSS