Power woes: Nepal to cut transmission leakage

Energy Minister Gokarna Bista said that the government aims to cut transmission leakage from 29 per cent to 20 per cent within the next six months.

Updated: Aug 04, 2011, 21:23 PM IST

Kathmandu: The Communist-led government plans
to step up reforms in the power sector, increase the capacity
of transmission lines along the Nepal-India border and boost
security at projects to overcome the crippling shortages in
the country.

The government has announced plans to reduce transmission
leakage, reform the loss-making Nepal Electricity Authority
(NEA) and step up security at hydropower projects under
construction in a bid to boost power supply in Nepal.

Energy Minister Gokarna Bista said that the government
aims to cut transmission leakage from 29 per cent to 20
per cent within the next six months.

The government has arranged the necessary security at the
power projects which are under construction in view of the
growing security problems at these projects, the minister
said.

The government recently deployed armed police forces and
civil police personnel at the 900-MW Upper Karnali project
contracted to Indian infrastructure major GMR Consortium after
the Maoists stormed its project office few months earlier.

Maoist leaders have opposed the project being given to
the Indian joint venture.

Bista said the government was also making efforts to
increase the capacity of the transmission lines along
Nepal-India border in order to import more electricity from
India so as to cut load-shedding.

He said constant monitoring and maintenance of power
projects will be carried out in order to increase the national
grid.

Currently, four hours of load shedding per day has been
enforced in the national capital Kathmandu and other major
cities across the country.

During the winter when the water level decreases in the
rivers connected to major power projects, the load shedding
would increase up to 16 hours daily.

Amid efforts to carry out reforms in the power sector,
Bista today resigned as the chairperson of the NEA. The move
is to make the authority free from political interference and
increase its efficiency.

Speaking at a programme to announce his resignation from
the NEA, Bista said the Rs 300 crores will be collected and 60
MW of electricity will be saved from cutting transmission
leakage by 9 per cent.

Energy Secretary has been appointed as chairman of the
NEA board through a cabinet decision.

PTI

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