The Nepali private sector has said that it is ready to provide support in bringing in Bangladeshi investment in the energy sector of Nepal.
At an interaction programme organised by the Bangladeshi Embassy here today, Shailendra Guragain, president of the Independent Power Producers’ Association – Nepal (IPPAN), said that they are willing to build the proverbial bridge to draw in investment from Bangladesh in the hydropower sector of Nepal.
“We would like to convey the message to the Bangladeshi investors that their investment in the hydroelectricity sector of Nepal is safe and secure and they will in time get the returns they expect,” he added.
“Obviously, there will be a few challenges in making investments in any country, however, as Nepal needs foreign direct investment to spur economic growth, it has introduced policies and programmes that are friendly towards foreign investment,” Guragain mentioned.
Speaking at the programme, Maha Prasad Adhikari, chief executive officer of Investment Board Nepal, said that they are ready to facilitate and play a constructive role to attract investment in Nepal.
“The government of Nepal calls on the Bangladeshi government and private sector to explore investment opportunities in Nepal in sectors like hydropower,” he added. “Nepal still has an immense untapped potential for investment in large scale hydropower and energy sector projects and we will do all that is required to help foreign investors in the country.”
On the occasion, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources of Bangladesh, Nasrul Hamid said that the memorandum of understanding (MoU) on energy cooperation between Nepal and Bangladesh that has been signed is a historically important milestone for development and exchange of power in both the countries.
“The MoU is a major breakthrough for energy cooperation between both the nations. Bangladesh has plans to invest and import clean and sustainable energy from Nepal,” said Minister Hamid.
At present, Bangladesh has managed its energy demand through different sources with 18 per cent coming from steam turbine, 34 per cent from combined cycle, eight per cent from gas turbine, 34 per cent from reciprocation engine, two per cent from hydropower and four per cent through imports from neighbouring countries. Due to this, the Bangladeshi government is highly dependent on fossil fuels for its energy consumption demand, which creates environmental problems.
“We need to develop Bangladesh as a country that relies on clean and sustainable energy rather than coal, oil or natural gas,” Hamid stated.
“The Bangladeshi government has plans to soon remove vehicles that operate on fossil flues, so we need to import clean energy from Nepal to reduce pollution to help in the fight against climate change and meet double digit growth.”
Source : The Himalayan Times.