KATHMANDU, Dec 15: Bangladesh has expressed its interest to sign power purchase agreement (PPA) directly with Nepal's private sector hydropower producers.
In a meeting held with the delegates from the Confederation of Nepalese Industries (CNI) on Tuesday, Bangladeshi authorities said they will start ground work to sign a PPA with Nepali side. “We will be purchasing Nepali production from next year,” said Nasrul Hamid, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources of Bangladesh.
Nepal is facing a loss of around Rs 5 billion from failing to utilize its 500 MW electricity produced in the rainy season. According to Hamid, Bangladesh will be upgrading the cross border transmission line and dedicated line to purchase Nepali production. “Bangladeshi delegates will be visiting Nepal in March to finalize a deal to import electricity from Nepali private hydropower producers,” he added.
Bangladesh has taken permission from Nepali authorities to conduct a survey of hydropower projects with capacity totaling 16,000 MW. With the Indian government endorsing a working guideline for cross-border power trade in March 2021, it has opened the gateway for the trilateral power trade.
Bangladesh is expected to face electricity demand of 24,000 MW by 2040, while in the next four years, the country has planned to completely stop producing electricity from its coal plants. Once Bangladesh starts purchasing electricity from Nepal, its cost will be lowered by a half, reads a press statement issued by the CNI.