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Tariff protocol inked for Mangdechhu hydropower project

Friday, 26 Apr 2019
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The governments of India and Bhutan have signed a tariff protocol for Mangdechhu hydropower project. The project will have capacity of 720 MW. The first yield of the Rs 4,500 crore Bhutan project is set to get into India’s national power pool by May-June 2019.

As per the finalised protocol detail provided by Bhutan Government’s Ministry of Economic Affairs, the starting tariff for a term of 35 years is BTN 4.21 (Rs 4.21) per unit. The tariff will go up at a rate of 10 percent every five years till Bhutan’s loan for the project is repaid and five percent afterward.

The government of India has funded Rs 3,382 crore for the project with 70 percent of that as loan and 30 percent grant. Mangdechhu hydroelectric project is 720 MW run-of-river power plant on the Mangdechhu River in Trongsa Dzongkhag district of central Bhutan. It is being developed by the Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project Authority (MHPA) constituted jointly by the governments of India and Bhutan.

The project was initiated in 2010, and is one of the major projects under Bhutan’s initiative to generate 10,000 MW hydropower by 2020 with Indian support. NHPC has undertaken design and has been associated as engineering consultant for the project that is estimated to generate 2,923 GWh of electricity.

A major share of the output will be put into Indian national grid through Siliguri in West Bengal via Bhutan’s Jigmeling substation by two 400 kV double-circuit transmission lines. The first unit of the project is now expected to become operational in May 2019, to be followed by all its other units by the end June 2019.

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