March 29: The construction of Upper Solu Hydropower Project, which started in 2013 after the electricity purchase and sale agreement in December 2012, has finally completed in March 2023.
The license of the project was revoked in August 2013 after a case was filed at the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) within 7 months of commencement of the project. But the promoter company Beni Hydropower Company managed to uphold the license of the project in October 2016.
The project, which was under construction since 2016, could not work without interruption for about three years due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Therefore, the company informed that the project got delayed and completed in March 2023.
Ganesh Karki, executive director of Beni Hydropower Company said that the project, which is estimated to cost Rs 3.5 billion, has been completed at a cost of just around Rs 180 million. He said that even though there were many obstacles, the cost of the project is less compared to other projects. Currently, the average cost of electricity projects is more than Rs 20 million per square meter.
Karki said that the dry test of the project, which was completed in Beni (Salleri) of Solukhumbu, started on March 27, Monday. He informed that there is a plan to test the project by producing electricity from next Friday and connect it to the transmission line of Nepal Electricity Authority by Sunday.
Although the project has been approved with the target of generating 18 megawatts of electricity, the project is currently generating 19.8 megawatts of electricity. Karki said that it is possible to generate about additional 2 megawatts of electricity.