December 14, 2017 11:10 AM NPT
KATHMANDU, Dec 14: The government is requesting India to increase electricity export to Nepal as well as resume supply affected by New Delhi's ban on pollutant sources that reduced power generation of captive power plants.
Nepal will formally make the request with India in the upcoming Joint Steering Committee (JSC) meeting to be held in New Delhi on December 21 and 22, according to officials of the Ministry of Energy (MoE) and the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).
The JSC meeting, which will be co-chaired by energy secretaries of Nepal and India, will also renew the agreement for import of electricity via Dhalkebar-Muzaffarpur Transmission Line.
JSC is a top-level authority to implement Power Trade Agreement (PTA) that Nepal and India signed in 2014.
Nepal is currently importing about 365 MW of energy from India. But import via Dhalkebar-Muzaffarpur transmission line and Tanakpur has come down by 25 MW and 30 MW, respectively, since November 17 after India's Supreme Court banned use of pet coke and furnace oil in industries in three states including Uttar Pradesh which borders Nepal. Electricity supplied via these routes is generated by cement factories which were using pet coke and furnace oil.
NEA's spokesperson Prabal Adhikari said that they will request India to supply 470 MW - the maximum capacity that the system supports.
However, import of additional energy via Dhalkebar as planned is not going to happen because of delay in construction of sub-station at Dhalkebar.
With the onset of winter season, NEA is under pressure to manage electricity supply. If import from India does not increase as planned, it might have to cut power to industries for two hours in the peak hours, according to officials of the energy utility.
The other key agendas to be discussed in the meeting are to find the financing modality to build second cross-border transmission line linking New Butwal and Gorakhpur. The Detailed Project Report of the project has already been prepared.