The prime ministers of Bangladesh and India are likely to inaugurate the second Indo-Bangla gridline that will facilitate import of additional 500MW of electricity from the first day of June this year from India.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina may request her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi to celebrate the historic event by attending the inaugural function of second Indo-Bangla gridline through video conferencing at the sideline of the commonwealth summit scheduled to be held in London on April 19-20.“We are expecting the commissioning of the Bheramara 2nd high voltage direct current (HVDC) on May 31, 2018…it is expected to import extra 500MW of electricity from June, 2018,” an official concerned said on condition of anonymity.
He said that a total of 640MW of electricity is now being imported from India. Of the electricity, 540MW of electricity comes from Bheramara 1st HVDC line through Baharampur of India.
The Indo-Bangla power exchange began in 2013.
Besides, rest of 100MW of electricity will come from Comilla via Tripura, India.
At the sideline of the commonwealth summit, the Bangladesh premier may also request to sign a trilateral memorandum of understanding (MoU) for joint investment in hydro power project in Bhutan by Bangladesh, India and Bhutan and import of electricity by Dhaka, official sources said.
Bangladesh has already proposed for signing the MoU in Dhaka, the official said.Besides, Bangladesh has already signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) and Implementation Agreement (IA) on November 2017 as the government is expected for commissioning the 1600MW power import from January 2022.
Both the premiers may also discuss on-duty structures of the power import that will help Dhaka in getting win-win tariff structure, the official said. Bangladesh is now concerned about duty structures that would accelerate the imported power tariff.
It is to be noted that Shapoorji Pallonji, an Indian company now developing a 220MW power plant in Bangladesh, is enjoying all the aforesaid benefit such as tax and VAT and financial implications due to political event and change in law.
Bangladesh may also expatiate for 450MW electricity import from Haladia and 1000-1500MW power from Sagardhigi power plant in West Bengal of India.
In a seminar on “Cross-border and regional power trade: Possibility and Opportunities for Bangladesh” in early current month, State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid said that the government had taken a plan to import 9000MW of electricity by 2041 from cross-border and regional power trade.
He said: “Bangladesh is now importing power from India. But, the government is planning to import more electricity from Nepal, Bhutan and Myanmar also.”