111 MW Rasuwagadhi, 15 MW Hewakhola A get generation licenses
BHOJ RAJ POUDEL
KATHMANDU, Dec 14: The government has approved power generation license for 111 MW Rasuwagadhi Hydropower and 15 MW Hewa Khola-A Hydropower Project this week after they completed their financial closure.
"The power generation licenses for the two projects have been approved," Gokarna Raj Pantha, senior division engineer at the Department of Electricity Development (DoED) told Republica.
Rasuwagadhi Hydropower Company Limited (RGHPCL) -- a subsidiary of Chilime Hydropower Company Limited (CHPCL), which is developing Rasuwagadhi hydropower project, and the government have also inked power purchase agreement (PPA).
According to the PPA, Nepal Electricity Authority, state owned sole hydropower regulatory authority, has agreed to buy the power generated by Rasuwagadhi.
Likewise, the government and the Panchthar Power Company Limited (PPCL), which is developing Hewa Khola-A, have already signed PPA for 12 MW of the 15 MW that PPCL generates. "We have awarded generation license to PPCL on condition that PPA for the remaining 3 MW will be signed within one year," Pantha said.
Hewakhola-A is located in Panchthar district. PPCL has already completed its financial closure.
Rasuwagadhi is a run-of-the-river project with 51 percent promoter shares and 49 percent of public shares. The project has offered 10 percent shares to the locals of the project area. Fifty percent of the project capital has been arranged through loan from the Employees Provident Fund (EPF).
The project is to be completed by 2016. A 90-meter test tunnel has already been dug.
According to the information available at the website of the promoter, a tri-partite loan agreement between RGHPCL, CHCPL and Employees Provident Fund (EPF) was signed in December 2011.
"The company has planned to start construction work from January 2013," the company´s website says. At present land is being acquisitioned in Thuman and Timeri VDCs of Rasuwa district for the project.
The company has plans to connect the power generated from the project by a 10-km 132 kV transmission line up to Chilime Hub. "We are hopeful that the project will be completed on time," Pantha added. "Otherwise the cost of construction increases which will be a burden for all those involved."