NEPA-INDIA POWER TRADE: Bihar Grid

Bihar Grid Will Be Used To Export Power From Nepal To India, Says MD Ghising

March 19, 2023, 5:05 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: VOL. 16, No. 15, March.24, 2023 (Chaitra 10. 2079) Publisher and Editor: Keshab Prasad Poudel Online Register Number: DOI 584/074-75

With the decision to create a method within a month to export Nepali electricity to other Indian states utilizing the Bihar Grid, Nepal Electricity Authority's long-standing concern about what to do with the excess electricity generated during the wet session was put to rest.

After numerous attempts to save millions of rupees from waste and export excess electricity to India, NEA's Managing Director Kul Man Ghising is ultimately successful in obtaining a concession from an Indian electricity utility.

In his second term, MD Ghising has dedicated a large portion of his time to utilizing the excess electricity produced in the nation by finishing the transmission and distribution lines domestically and negotiating with Indian utilities.

Increase domestic consumption or export to India are the two alternatives available to NEA with the over 1000 MW of electricity excess from the upcoming session. Evacuating power from hydropower plants for domestic market distribution is a significant task because of the numerous barriers to transmission line installation and distribution system growth.

MD Ghising has been traveling the nation recently and meeting with stakeholders to explore removing the barriers. Likewise, MD Ghising carried on the conversation he had started with his Indian colleague.

NEA delegation in New Delhi.jpg

MD Ghising has accomplished something on both fronts. The recently concluded Nepal-India Power Exchange Committee Conference in New Delhi has made significant progress in the export arena. The group decided to create a method by the end of the month to export Nepali electricity to other Indian states utilizing the Bihar Grid.

The meeting was co-chaired by Executive Director of Nepal Electricity Authority, Ghising, and Member (power system) of the Central Electricity Authority of India, Ashok Kumar Rajput.

A meeting of the Nepal-India Power Exchange Committee is to prepare a modality for power export from Nepal to other states of India through central transmission line via Bihar grid. The 14th meeting of the committee concluded on March 17 at New Delhi, India, decided to prepare the modality of power to be exported by Nepal within a month.

"Both sides will finalize the modality within a month for the same. This has ensured the additional market for the sale of surplus electricity during the rainy season," shared NEA Executive Director Ghising.

Kataiya (Bihar)-Kushaha (Nepal) and Raxaul-Parawanipur 132kV transmission line are connected with Bihar.The meeting as per the Power Exchange Agreement has determined the price of per unit electricity at Rs 11.54 for the fiscal year 2022-23.The new tariff is not based on the 'Take or Pay' modality, he clarified. "This is the tariff Nepal purchases when in need. Since we only import electricity when needed, the tariff is cheaper than in the current Indian market. We don't get this rate even when we export electricity.

"He shared that while making requisition for electricity with India in last December, they had proposed that Nepal would purchase electricity from the Indian company through bidding, in which the electricity would be procured for Rs 7.50 for per unit in February and March and Rs 8.70 per unit in April and May.

Ghising explained that the companies selected in the competition are only allowed to sell electricity produced from imported coal to Nepal, and due to fluctuating price of coal, the Indian company was not adamant to ink an agreement with the authority even at the proposed tariff.

According to him, the system of imported coal was not applicable in Bihar State. Hence, the rate of electricity has become cheaper. The average price of electricity per unit in the competitive market is INR 12. "An additional INR 1.5 is added to this tariff including transmission charges. Hence, the rate fixed at present is cheaper than others.

"The meeting decided that a modality will be fixed within a month for Nepal to export electricity to Bihar. "With this, the market for Nepal's surplus electricity has been assured."Nepal imports electricity from India when needed through Power Exchange Agreement and as per the Mahakali Treaty as well as through competition. Electricity is being imported to Nepal through Dhalkebar-Muzzafarpur cross-border 400 kV double circuit transmission line and other transmission lines.NEA has traded surplus electricity worth Rs 8.4 billion to India in this fiscal so far.

Ghising, managing director of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), characterized the choice as another step forward. Following the most recent conference between the foreign secretaries of Nepal and India, which was presided over by the secretaries of Nepal, Bharat Raj Paudyal, and India, Vinay Mohan Kwatra, Nepal and India have made significant strides in the field of electricity.

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