Bangladesh Moves a Step Closer to Importing Electricity from Nepal

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Bangladesh Moves a Step Closer to Importing Electricity from Nepal

KATHMANDU: A high-level authority of Bangladesh has decided to import 40 megawatts of electricity from Nepal in the next five years, according to news reports published by Bangladeshi media.

On Tuesday, a cabinet committee led by Finance Minister of Bangladesh, Abul Hasan Mahmud Ali, approved the purchase of 40 megawatts of electricity from Nepal. According to the state-run news agency Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS), Mahmudul Hossain Khan, secretary of the Cabinet Division (Coordination and Reform), announced this decision, confirming the five-year electricity import plan.

The electricity will be transferred from Nepal to Bangladesh via India's transmission grid under a tripartite agreement involving the Bangladesh Power Development Board, Nepal Electricity Authority, and India's NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam (NVVN). India has indicated readiness for this tripartite arrangement.

The agreed-upon price for the electricity is 8.17 Bangladeshi Taka per unit. Nepal had proposed this price to Bangladesh in December, but the Bangladeshi government delayed its decision.

An official from the Nepal Electricity Authority stated that following the Bangladesh Cabinet Committee's decision, Nepal can soon begin exporting electricity to Bangladesh. Nepal aims to start this export during the current rainy season. A high-level meeting between the two countries is expected to finalize the details soon.

Navin Singh, spokesperson for Nepal's Ministry of Energy, Water Resources, and Irrigation, previously informed New Business Age that the next meeting of the joint mechanism—the Joint Secretary-level Joint Working Group (JWG) and the Secretary-level Joint Steering Committee (JSC)—is scheduled for June 23 and 24 in Pokhara.

The official also mentioned that discussions at the high-level meeting will include how to maximize electricity exchange using the current transmission infrastructure.

"NVVN can also participate, potentially leading to a tripartite agreement, but the exact outcome is uncertain," said an official from the NEA.

Till date, Nepal has only sold electricity to India. Energy sector officials believe that if this export to Bangladesh succeeds, it will pave the way for tripartite cooperation in the energy sector.


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