India has become a net exporter of electricity during the April-February period this fiscal for the first time, power ministry said on Wednesday.
“As per Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the designated authority of the government of India for cross-border trade of electricity, first time India has turned around from a net importer of electricity to net exporter of electricity,” power ministry said in a statement.
According to the statement, during the current year 2016-17 (April-February), India has exported around 5,798 million units to Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar which is 213 million units more than the import of around 5,585 million units from Bhutan.
Export to Nepal and Bangladesh increased 2.5 and 2.8 times respectively in the last three years. Ever since the cross-border trade of electricity started in the mid-80s, India has been importing power from Bhutan and marginally exporting to Nepal in radial mode at 33 kV and 132 kV from Bihar and Uttar Pradesh respectively.
On an average, Bhutan has been supplying around 5,000-5,500 million units to India, it said. India had also been exporting around 190 MW power to Nepal over 12 cross-border interconnections at 11kV, 33kV and 132 kV level. The export of power to Nepal further increased by around 145 MW with the commissioning of Muzaffarpur (India)– Dhalkhebar (Nepal) 400kV line (being operated at 132 kV) in 2016, it added.
The export of power to Bangladesh from India got further boost with commissioning of the first cross-border interconnection between Baharampur in India and Bheramara in Bangladesh at 400kV in September 2013. It was further augmented by commissioning of second cross-border Interconnection between Surjyamaninagar (Tripura) in India and South Comilla in Bangladesh.
At present, around 600 MW power is being exported to Bangladesh. The export of power to Nepal is expected to increase by around 145 MW shortly over 132 kV Katiya (Bihar)– Kusaha (Nepal) and 132 kV Raxaul (Bihar)– Parwanipur (Nepal). A few more cross-border links with neighbouring countries are in the pipeline which would further increase export of power.