Promoters drag feet on large hydro projects


    KATHMANDU,  March 9:

    MoEnPromoters have not started works even if the government has given licenses for survey for hydro power generation of large quantities. This has hampered the resolution of energy crisis in the country.

    The government has so far given licenses for survey for generation of 6,442 mw of power to Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) and private sector promoters. But works have not been started in these so-called large projects thereby deepening the energy crisis.

    The government has given permission for reservoir projects, with the realisation that energy crisis was there because now only the run-of-the-river projects are in operation.

    But the promoters of these projects have not started project works saying Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Project Development Agreement (PDA) were not reached.

    As a result, crisis is growing as daily demand increases but the production has not increased accordingly. The government has so far given permission of survey for 20 big projects said to be of large scale.

    Of them, the 900-mw Upper Karnali is the largest project given permission, said Information Officer of the Department of Electricity Department Gokarna Raj Pantha.

    The promoter of the project is Indian company GMR. But although it discussed frequently with the Investment Board, project development agreement and PPA could not be finalized and when the construction would begin is in doubt.

    Likewise, the process of 900 mw Arun Third project to be constructed by Indian company Sutlej Electricity Corporation has also not been forwarded on the pretext that the project´s PDA and PPA have been stopped.

    The department has said it has been long since it gave permission for Tila 1 project, but it is also uncertain. The 440 mw project is to be constructed by SC Power.

    Similarly, 420 mw Tila 2 is also uncertain of its start which is to be constructed by the same company. No process has been moved ahead of Tallo Manang Marsyangdi to be constructed by Butwal Power so far.

    The status of 303 mw Namlan, 160 mw Lapcha Khola, and 138-mw Dudhkoshi-2´s is also unknown. The process of 350 mw Dudhkoshi-4 promoted by Indian company KVR India has also not started its process.

    Statuses unknown are of Upper Trishuli -2 of 102 mw, and Karnali 7 of 330 mw and 121-mw Thuli Bheri. Its promoter is GAGE Nepal. In the 440 mw Bheri First, taken survey license by Indian KSK, also the promoter of Bheri 2, process has not moved ahead in both projects.

    The 111-mw Ghandruk Modi, 480 mw Bheri- 3, and 254 mw Upper Budhigandaki to be promoted by Trishakti Urja, Sunrise Hydro and Nausani Hydro respectively are not started yet.

    The 300 mw Dudhkoshi and 200 mw Tamor to be developed by NEA too have not gained momentum of any process.
    Ministry of Energy is to alert all of them as no works started even if permission given.

    New Minister Radha Gyawali is of the view that the promoters who have not started works should not be given the projects for ever.

    Department´s Information Officer Pantha says the promoters have been said to present progress report immediately and if they do not, government will be compelled to take legal action.
    Although the government is determined to resolve energy crisis, promoters have not complied and what step the government would take is a matter of wait and see.

    Source : RSS