500MW to be bought from Nepal
The government will import 500 megawatts of electricity from Nepal, said the power and energy ministry in a press release yesterday.
“We have almost finalised importing power from Nepal’s Karnali hydropower project through GMR Group,” said State Minister Nasrul Hamid presenting a keynote at a “power summit” in Kathmandu.
Nepal is the second country from where electricity is being imported. Bangladesh first bought 1,160MW of electricity from India.
Officials of the Power Division said the purchase rate was finalised at 7.72 cents per kilowatt-hour.
The rates with India vary with a majority being 7.79 cents.
“We are also interested in importing electricity from Bhutan,” added Hamid.
“Nepal and Bhutan can also get power from us during the winter season as demand for electricity falls here during the season and increases in Nepal and Bhutan,” he said.
Hamid said such cooperation could also be enhanced with the Seven Sister States of India.
There is scope to work together, he added. “Electricity trade in South Asia will contribute to faster economic development in the region,” said Hamid.
Suffering from chronic power shortages, Bangladesh increased its generation capacity by over fourfold to 22,562MW in 2018 from 4,952MW in 2009 to meet the demand for its growing economy, according to the Power Division.
Some 95 percent of the population now have access to electricity, official data shows.