The Himalayan Times, 9 June 2017
As the new government is going to appoint a new energy minister very soon, the Independent Power Producers’ Association-Nepal (IPPAN) has sought continuity in the 99-point program named ‘National Energy Crisis Mitigation and Electricity Development Decade’, which was unveiled last year.
“Rather than bringing new strategic plans or vision documents, the new government should give continuity to implementation of the 99-point programme,” said Shailendra Guragain, president of IPPAN. “Some of the programs mentioned in the vision document have already come into implementation, but there are various procedural and policy-related issues that need to be addressed still.”
Since 2001, the Ministry of Energy (MoE) has issued five strategic documents. This translates to one strategic document in a gap of every three years, on an average. In 2001, the MoE adopted ‘Water Resource Strategy’, which was revised in 2005 into ‘National Water Plan’. In 2007, a plan calling for construction of 10,000 MW in 10 years was adopted, which was then altered in 2009 to become a plan for 25,000 MW in 10 years.
In the wake of trade disruptions that acutely affected the import of petroleum products, the government came up with another revamped plan, which was named ‘National Energy Crisis Mitigation and Electricity Development Decade’ last year, which was unveiled after holding intensive consultation with stakeholders and experts.
Stating IPPAN has also taken an ownership of the latest vision document, which aims to develop 10,000 megawatts of electricity by 2026, Khadga Bahadur Bisht, the past president of IPPAN, said that the country’s energy sector has started witnessing tangible changes after the previous government started implementing the 99-point program.
IPPAN is apprehensive about the inconsistencies in energy-related policies, which may stall the growth of energy sector. Independent power producers are going to implement projects with a total rated capacity of around 3,000 megawatts, which have already concluded financial closure and construction of some of the projects is underway.