Kathmandu: Nepal and Bangladesh have agreed to import 40 megawatts of electricity from Nepal. In a meeting of the Nepal-Bangladesh Joint Energy Secretary-level Joint Steering Committee held in Bangladesh, it was agreed to import 40 megawatts of electricity from Nepal using the Indian transmission line.
According to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Energy, Madhu Prasad Bhetwal, Nepal Electricity Authority, NTCPCL (Nepal Trading Power Company Limited), India, and Bangladesh Power Development Board have reached an agreement to sign a power purchase agreement for the sale of electricity between Nepal and Bangladesh at the earliest. NTCPCL is the nodal agency appointed by the Indian government for electricity trade with countries including Nepal and Bangladesh. Currently, all electricity import-export between Nepal and India is done through NTCPCL.
In case Nepal fails to meet its domestic electricity demand during the monsoon season, it can sell the surplus electricity to India and Bangladesh. Nepal has been exporting electricity to India in increasing quantities. Now, preparations are underway to export electricity to Bangladesh as well. For this purpose, the use of the Indian transmission line is necessary, and therefore, the approval of the Indian side is also mandatory. Although discussions have also taken place regarding the construction of a dedicated transmission line between Nepal and Bangladesh.
In the meeting held on Monday and Tuesday, it was decided to sign a tripartite agreement with India to use the transmission line for power transmission. In the same meeting, it was also decided to sign an agreement within six months regarding the joint investment of Nepal and Bangladesh in the Sunkoshi-3 hydropower project.
Discussions have been underway for several years regarding the construction of a dedicated transmission line between Nepal and Bangladesh. In the immediate future, Nepal and Bangladesh have proposed to use the Indian transmission line in the Siliguri Corridor. Nepal has been working to advance trilateral discussions on energy cooperation among Nepal, Bangladesh, and India. The seventh meeting of the Nepal-India Energy Secretary-level Joint Steering Committee held in Delhi on Ashoj 28, 2076 BS, had agreed that it was necessary to reach a trilateral agreement among Nepal, India, and Bangladesh, and the Indian Ministry of External Affairs had agreed to convene a meeting within three months. However, India has not yet extended an invitation for such a meeting.
In the Nepal-Bangladesh Joint Energy Secretary-level meeting held on Monday and Tuesday, it was also decided to invite India for the use of the transmission line. In the same meeting, it was also decided to sign an agreement within six months regarding the joint investment of Nepal and Bangladesh in the Sunkoshi-3 hydropower project.
In July 2075 BS, Nepal and Bangladesh had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for energy cooperation, including energy exchange and technical cooperation between Nepal and Bangladesh. After the MoU, the then Energy Minister also visited Bangladesh. In addition, a team of Bangladeshi officials has visited Nepal several times for preparations for electricity export.
In an interview with Online Khabar, Nepali Ambassador to Bangladesh Salahuddin Noman Chowdhury had mentioned that Bangladesh is a power-hungry country and Nepal can be a source of electricity for Bangladesh.