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Nepal-Bangladesh ink MOU on energy cooperation

By Our Reporter
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on energy cooperation between Nepal and Bangladesh has been signed, ensuring Bangladesh’s entry in Nepal’s power development sector.
The agreement signed last week has opened up a new avenue for trade in power and investment in hydropower between Nepal and Bangladesh.
The two countries were holding talks on bilateral energy cooperation since 2014.
Minister for Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation Barsha Man Pun and State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources of Bangladesh Nasrul Hamid inked the agreement at a special function held at the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation.
The MoU on Energy Sector Cooperation was signed with the objectives of enhancing economic development of the two countries, uplifting the living standards of the people, increasing power generation and transforming the bilateral benefits achieved through the development of the power sector into regional benefit, among others.
Grid connectivity, energy efficiency, development of renewable energy and exploitation of the vast water resources of the region to improve the living standard of the people of the entire region are the other objectives of the agreement, according the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation.
The MoU has a provision to invest and cooperate in developing hydropower projects by abiding by the rules and regulations of the concerned countries.
The MoU has also a provision to facilitate the government agencies and the private sector agencies for the successful implementation of the projects and visits to the hydropower projects developed in the two countries.
The MoU signed between Nepal and Bangladesh on power had ended the practice of signing similar MoUs with only immediate neighbours—India and China.
The two countries can take necessary steps for establishing national and regional grid connectivity and look for possible options for power trade between them.
Bangladeshi Minister of State for Electricity, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid who was in Kathmandu for the signing of the MoU underlined the need for energy cooperation among the member countries of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) for the overall development of the region.
He stressed the need for making the SAARC region a free energy market to enjoy the mutual benefits of the energy potentials of the region.
Addressing an interaction on Power Sector Cooperation between Bangladesh and Nepal, he said that all member states of the SAARC can get mutual benefits by harnessing hydroelectricity potential of Nepal and Bhutan.

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