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Nepal-China energy talks today

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 28, 2018-

Nepali and Chinese officials will brief each other about their respective energy sectors in an energy-secretary level meeting slated to be held in Kathmandu on Friday.

The representatives will explain their respective government’s energy policy, energy market, total demand and supply of energy and prevailing project development modalities at the first ever Nepal-China joint steering committee (JSC) meeting.

A seven-member Nepali team led by Energy Secretary Anup Kumar Upadhyaya will give a presentation to enlighten their Chinese counterparts.

“Since this is the first meeting, the focus will be on letting each other know about the scenario prevailing in their country,” said Dinesh Kumar Ghimire, spokesperson for the Energy Ministry and a member of the JSC.

“After the representatives of the two countries have been briefed about the energy scenario, it will help us to prepare the agenda for the next meeting.”

Besides explaining the situation in the energy sector, the Nepali team will also ask the Chinese officials to update them on the status of the hydropower and transmission line projects that Nepal has requested China to develop.

Nepal has asked for China’s help to develop the 410 MW Nalgad Storage, 450 MW Kimathanka Arun, 426 MW Phulkot Karnali and 762 MW Tamor Storage hydropower projects.

Similarly, it has sought Chinese help to build the 400 kV Koshi Corridor, 400 kV Karnali Corridor, 400 kV Western Mid-Hill, 400 kV Eastern Mid-Hill and 756 kV Butwal-Mahendranagar transmission lines. “We will ask them for their opinion about our request,” said Ghimire.

Nepal plans to build some of these projects with Chinese grants and others by forming joint ventures with Chinese companies. The meeting will also discuss the financing modality for the first ever Nepal-China cross-border transmission line.

Although the two countries have agreed to build the trans-Himalayan power line, they are yet to decide the construction and financing modality.

The 400 kV transmission line will extend from Galchhi in Nepal to Shigatse in China. Nepal has requested China to fund the project, but it has not received an official answer from the northern neighbour. Both countries have formed separate joint technical teams to expedite the project, but the teams are yet to reach a conclusion on the modality.

The JSC is an energy secretary-level mechanism established to promote collaboration between Nepal and China. It was formed to implement the energy cooperation agreement signed with China during Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s visit to the northern neighbour in June.

After Prime Minister Oli’s visit, the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation formed a seven-member team under the leadership of Energy Secretary Upadhyaya to represent Nepal in the committee which invited Chinese officials to Kathmandu for the first ever meeting.

Published: 28-09-2018 08:57

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