Kathmandu: Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli on Monday inaugurated the 456 MW Upper Tamakoshi hydropower project, which would make Nepal a power exporter in the wet season.
The project on Tamakoshi River in Dolakha district in central Nepal is the country’s largest and also one of its National Pride Projects.
“The completion of the Upper Tamakoshi project has provided an opportunity for Nepal to export power in addition to local consumption, which is a great achievement,” Oli said, inaugurating the project virtually.
“Now we have to increase the use of electricity in our kitchen, nationwide electrification, industrial use, education so that we can promote green development of the country,” he added.
The first unit of the 456-MW capacity project came into operations on Monday and the generated electricity was connected to the national grid through a 47.2-km transmission line from Gogara, Dolakha-based powerhouse to Khimti having 220-KV capacity, Nepal’s national news agency, RSS, reported.
The hydropower project started in 2011 and was to be completed in six years, but got delayed due to a variety of reasons such as the earthquake in 2015.
Though the primary estimated investment for the project was Nepali Rs 35 billion it surged to around Nepali Rs 80 billion due to fluctuations in the rates of US dollars and interests, RSS said.
India has taken steps to facilitate power trade with neighbouring countries, including Nepal.
Nepal needs the Indian market to sell its energy as the country is expected to have a surplus in the monsoon, according to the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA).
“Nepal can trade the power in Indian power exchange market,” said Kul Man Ghising, former NEA MD.