Energy Development Council proposed short term measures to Finance Ministry with regards to alleviating the ongoing energy crisis, and immediate action required from the Finance Ministry.
EDC is a not for profit apex body established to represent the interest of the entire energy sector of Nepal and comprises of leading energy organizations of Energy Developers, Energy Associations and Energy Financiers and other funds, energy contractors from both private and government sectors involved in hydropower, solar, wind, other renewable, financial and consumer institutions. Sujit Acharya, Chairperson of the Council who was accompanied by other EDC delegates presented the 19 point statement to the Minister.
Finance Minister, Bishnu Poudel said that the suggestions made by EDC would be taken into consultation and actions would be taken accordingly. He also said that the concern raised by the Council is relevant to the present energy crisis and the proposals made will contribute in solving energy problem in short term and long term.
The statement recommends all duties, value added taxes on electric vehicles, electric cooking stoves and energy projects to be reduced to 0.1%. The Council believes that such electric vehicles, electric stoves, solar appliances, hydro & electro- mechanical equipments should be assembled in Nepal and has proposed government to provide various incentives.
The reason for these tax relaxations was to increase the consumption and production of domestically generated electricity. The implementation of the 19 points in the statement would strongly support the recent declaration made by the Prime Minister, K.P. Sharma Oli.
The Council has strongly voiced that the PPA for all the hydro power projects should be based only on “Take or Pay”. The current practice where NEA has stopped doing “Take or Pay” has blocked the production of domestically generated electricity and exacerbated the ongoing energy crisis.
The Council has also suggested only one integrated Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) should be done for power projects upto 100 MW. The Council also proposed the declaration of Posted rate for storage based hydropower projects, solar and other renewable energy projects. Further, the Council has also suggested removal of the clause of 1% extra tax (PES) imposed by Ministry of Forest and land gift to the government for leasing of land.
The Council congratulated the government on its decision to mobilize the Nepal army for the construction of transmission lines – an issue the Council had been raising repeatedly.
Finally, the Council stated that implementation of its 19 point concrete measures would help Nepal overcome the current energy crisis in Nepal.