NEA sells Rs 15.4 billion worth of power to India during monsoon this year

KATHMANDU, Dec 8: The Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) has exported power worth Rs 15.4 billion to India during the monsoon this year. As per the agreement, the NEA started exporting surplus electricity to India on June 1, 2023.

Accordingly, the NEA sold over 1.7 billion units of electricity worth Rs 15.4 billion to India between June 1 and December 6, 2023. A maximum of 700 megawatts of power was sold daily at Rs 8.77 per unit. 

The disaggregated data shows over Rs 13.2 billion worth of electricity was sold in five months along from the Nepali month of Shrawan (July-August) to Mangsir 20 (December 6). During the period, more than 1.47 billion units were sold at Rs 8.96 per unit.  

However, following the decrease in the production of electricity as a result of the decrease in the water flow in the rivers due to the dry season, the demand for internal consumption has increased resulting in the commencement of the import of power from the Indian market. So, the export will come to a halt from today night, it has been said. 

The import of electricity from India has started as the domestic production is not enough to meet the demand at home, said the NEA executive director Kulman Ghising, adding that the current daily demand for power is a maximum of 1700 megawatts across the country. 

"Now, the production and demand are at the equal level. We are operating our semi-reservoir-based powerhouses during the peak hours in the evening and morning after filling during noon and night," he said.    

"The import of electricity during the peak hours is costlier, and it is relatively cheap during noon and night. So, electricity will be purchased outside the peak hours."

This year, Nepal is projected to be an exporter of electricity despite there being an increase in imports in the Nepali month of Chaitra (March-April)  and Baisakh (April-May).

"The export will resume from the second week of coming Baisakh (last week of April 2024). This year, around 900 megawatts of electricity are being added to the national grid. Similarly, next year, power worth approximately Rs 25 billion will be exported. High-powered transmission lines are being constructed for the transmission operation improvement between the two countries. On the other hand, hydropower projects are being built within the country. In this context, a climate is being created wherein electricity worth around Rs 100 billion will be exported in the next five years," he added.

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