Dhaka: Seeks 2000MW Solar Power from India

Bangladeshis trying to buy at least 2,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity from solar plants being set up in Gujarat and Rajasthan.

India is currently supplying 660 MW of electricity to power-starved Bangladesh to create a new energy security architecture for its neighbour.

Bir Bikram Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, adviser for power, energy and mineral resources affairs to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said in a Mint report that, “Electricity being generated [in India] from sunshine and there is darkness out there (in Bangladesh).”

The official spoke at the 16th International Energy Forum Ministerial (IEF—16) held in New Delhi last week. On the sidelines of the event, he said, “We could take up to 2,000MW of solar power if they can provide.”

Talking about transmission of power from India to Bangladesh, he said, “It’s a bit of a technical challenge for transmitting it over great distance but the engineers must be able to solve it.”

The interest of Bangladesh seems to come on the backdrop of India’s record low solar power tariff of Rs 2.44 per unit registered in May 2017.

Also, India and Bangladesh signed two lines of credit worth $5 billion during Sheikh Hasina’s visit to India last year. During the visit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had highlighted energy security as an important dimension of ties between India and Bangladesh, and promised to add another 500MW under an existing transmission link.

Chowdhury also spoke of Adani Group’s Jharkhand thermal power project. A model on the lines of Adani’s plant can be explored in solar energy, where the entire electricity generated would be provided to Bangladesh, he said.

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