India became a net exporter of electricity during the April-February period for the first time, the Power Ministry said on Wednesday.
“As per the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the designated authority of the Government of India for Cross Border Trade of Electricity, (for the) first time India has turned around from a net importer to net exporter of electricity,” the Power Ministry said in a statement.
In FY17 up to 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 mid-1980s, 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. On an average, Bhutan has been supplying 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 levels.
The export of power to Nepal further increased by around 145 MW with the commissioning of the Muzaffarpur (India) - Dhalkhebar (Nepal) 400kV line (being operated at 132 kV) in 2016, the statement added.
The export of power to Bangladesh from India got a further boost with the 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) 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 the export of power.