Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda' said he is confident that a far-reaching and significant agreement would be signed regarding the energy sector during his China visit scheduled in the next month.
He also expressed his commitment to take forward those multipurpose and mega hydropower projects of strategic importance in the involvement of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).
Addressing an event organized by the NEA on the 38th anniversary of the NEA here today, PM Prachanda said he was particularly happy and proud to share that the incumbent government was moving ahead with the plan and thoughts to accelerate the Budhigandaki hydro-power project of 1,200-megawatt capacity and multipurpose Karnali Chisapani hydro project of 10,800-megawatts in coming days.
He expressed his confidence that the NEA, which has been contributing towards the development of electricity in the country and buying the electricity produced by the private sector, would play a stronger and leading role in the sector of power production, stating that the government was moving forward with a clear target of exporting electricity.
He narrated, "As I stand here to address the 38th anniversary of the Authority (NEA), I am remembering the appalling situation of the power outage that the country was facing in the rainy season when I was the Prime Minister for the second time in August 2016."
The PM further recalled the fact that there used to be load shedding for as long as 18 hours a day and over 40 per cent of the country's population lived in darkness in lack of access to electricity.
The PM asserted, "As I assumed the leadership of the government, far-reaching decisions were taken for the development of the energy sector and many initiatives were taken in the best interest of the people and country.
"It is a well-known fact that the power outage was ended forever and the NEA was made profitable by considering a host of measures such as policy reforms and overhauling the NEA management and leadership among others," the PM explained.
Saying Nepal has gained popularity for being a high potential for power generation, PM Prachanda stressed the need for tapping into the potential of viewing the climate change risks.
There are many ways created to export surplus electricity while increasing electricity consumption within the home, he said, adding the government was effortful in bringing a new electricity act, and other required policies and directives.
There is a need for the country to pay a ‘special’ focus on the production and use of green hydrogen informing that the government would bring a policy related to hydrogen soon, Prime Minister Prachanda said.
He shared, “Nepal can be a centre of green energy in the context when green hydrogen is commercial potential. It will help achieve the target of reducing carbon emissions while developing and consuming clean and renewable energy. I urged the related sector to carry out additional research in the sector and develop the technology based on knowledge.”
Stating that the Nepal Electricity Authority had been at work to achieve the target of bringing electricity to all Nepali people within two years, he expressed the hope that the NEA would succeed in achieving the target on time.
He mentioned that he has given special emphasis to mutual coordination among all concerned ministries and bodies to create the appropriate environment for the establishment and operation of industries consuming more electricity and moving ahead adopting maximum use of electricity as the strong basis of national economy and prosperity.
Prime Minister Prachanda shared it was indispensable for NEA to complete various projects within the projected schedule proving itself capable in the campaign for economic prosperity.
The PM said the way has been paved to sell the surplus power to other countries including India, adding "I have taken the agreements signed during the meeting with my Indian counterpart, Narendra Modi, during the India visit as the important milestone of long-term power trade."
The country has been exporting around 450 megawatts of electricity and a preliminary agreement has already been signed between Nepal and India to export 10,000 megawatts of electricity in 10 years, he added.
Necessary activities have been forwarded from both Nepal and India in order to construct a 400 kV- Butwal-Gorakhpur transmission line in the near future, PM Prachanda viewed.
He further said he has given necessary instruction to bring the draft of the construction of two more transmission lines—400 kV Inaruwa-Purniya and Dodhara-Bareli transmission lines at consensus within the next two months through the energy-secretary level mechanism.
The PM mentioned that final preparation was underway to sign an agreement among the bodies concerned of Nepal, India and Bangladesh in order to start Nepal-Bangladesh power trading during this rainy season.