BIMSTEC member countries will sign a multilateral document soon for establishment of the BIMSTEC "grid interconnection" to further strengthen energy cooperation among the countries, reports UNB.
The document will be signed among the member states of BIMSTEC at the upcoming third BIMSTEC Energy Ministers' meeting to be held in Nepal shortly, officials said.
The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is an international organisation involving a group of countries in South Asia and South East Asia - Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan and Nepal.
The Indian Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the proposal of the Indian Ministry of Power for signing of 'Memorandum of Understanding for Establishment of the BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection' on Wednesday.
The 'Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation in BIMSTEC' was formulated in the first BIMSTEC Energy Ministers' Conference held in New Delhi on October 4, 2005.
In this plan, under the "BIMSTEC Trans-Power Exchange and Development Project", it was decided that a Task Force led by Thailand, with representatives of member countries, will give a report on draft MoU for grid interconnections.
Total five meetings of taskforce for BIMSTEC on Trans-power Exchange were held and the draft MoU for establishment of BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection was finalized by the taskforce on March 16, 2015.
In the BIMSTEC Leaders' Retreat 2016, held in Goa on October 16, 2016, the leaders decided to expedite the signing of the MoU on BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection. Eventually, during the 4th meeting of BIMSTEC senior officials on energy held on January 11-12, 2017, the MoU was discussed and finalized.
This MoU will provide a broad framework for the Parties to cooperate towards the implementation of grid interconnections for the trade in electricity with a view to promoting rational and optimal power transmission in the BIMSTEC region, said the Press Information Bureau of India.
This MoU will facilitate the optimization of using the energy resources in the region for mutual benefits on non-discriminatory basis subject to laws, rules and regulations of the respective Parties.
It will also facilitate the promotion of efficient, economic, and secure operation of power system needed through the development of regional electricity networks; the necessity of optimization of capital investment for generation capacity addition across the region; and power exchange through cross border interconnections.