The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has extended a $451 million loan to strengthen power connectivity between the southern and northern parts of the Chennai–Kanyakumari Industrial Corridor (CKIC).
CKIC is part of the East Coast Economic Corridor (ECEC) in Tamil Nadu. ADB is lead partner of the Indian government for developing ECEC.
The project will help Tamil Nadu meet increasing power demand from commercial enterprises by allowing transfer of power from new generation facilities, including renewable energy, in the southern CKIC to the industrial hubs in the state’s northern region, said Sameer Kumar Khare, Additional Secretary (Fund Bank and ADB), Department of Economic Affairs, after signing a loan agreement.
The project will provide an impetus to the industrial development of CKIC, which ADB has been assisting in right from the planning stage.The project is expected to enhance industrial competitiveness while creating well paid jobs to support the state’s rapid economic transformation, said Kenichi Yokoyama, country director of ADB’s India Resident Mission.
The state is aiming to develop the northern Chennai–Tiruchirappalli area of CKIC as a manufacturing hub while dedicating the southern Madurai–Thoothukudi portion for the development of renewable energy-based power generation because of the availability of wind and solar resources.
The project will help establish extra-high-voltage transmission link between Virudhunagar and Coimbatore to transfer the additional generation capacity of 9,000 megawatt (MW), including 6,000 MW from renewables, by 2025. This will help reliably evacuate power from these new power plants in the southern CKIC. The project will also build the operational capacity of TANTRANSCO, the state-owned company responsible for transmission, by supporting a financial restructuring plan, better facilities and work environment for women workers, and improved monitoring system for social and environmental impacts. To support this end, ADB has approved a complementary technical assistance grant of $650,000.