State-run power producer NTPC Ltd’s overseas plans are likely to take a new turn this year. According to sources, work on its Sri Lanka project is likely to start by year- end, while an environmental impact study is going on for its Bangladesh project.
Last year, both NTPC and the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) of Sri Lanka had incorporated a joint venture, Trincomalee Power Co, to set up a 2x250 megawatt (Mw) coal-based power project at Sampur in the Trincomalee region. The overall investment of the project was expected to be Rs 3,000 crore.
“The feasibility report for the project is ready and both governments are likely to sign the remaining agreements, including a power purchase agreement by September, and the work on project is likely to start by December,” said CEB Chairman Wimaladharma Abeywickrama.
While confirming the Sri Lanka developments, a top NTPC official said an environmental impact assessment was going on for its proposed 1,320-Mw (2X660-Mw) project at Khulna in Bangladesh. “We are yet to get environment clearance for the Khulna project,” the official said. A 50:50 joint venture is already in place between NTPC and the Bangladesh Power Development Board regarding this.
However, environmental activists had approached the court, asking the project to be scrapped as it comes within 14 km of Sunderbans. According to them, the plant at Bagerhat district’s Rampal area in Khulna division comes with in the core area of Sunderbans. The project was pegged at about $1.5 billion. According to NTPC, another project in Bangladesh at Chittagong is still in its infant stages.
In yet another foreign venture, the firm was planning to develop a 620 Mw hydro electric project in Bhutan. It has already prepared a detailed project report on the Amochu hydro electric project in Bhutan. The state-run power major has already requested the Centre for allocation of the Amochu Reservoir Hydro Electric Project to NTPC for execution in joint venture mode. However, the official added NTPC’s plans to set up a solar project in Maldives was still in its initial stages.