Stakeholders urge reforms in NEA
KATHMANDU, JUL 14 -
Entrepreneurs and power developers have asked the government to carry out organisational and financial reforms in the Nepal Electricity Authority ( NEA ) to ensure regular power supply after tariff hike.
NEA announced a 20 percent hike on an average in electricity tariff last month. The new rates will come into effect from the next fiscal year.
Stakeholders urged the government to minimise power leakage that stands at 29 percent of the total electricity generated. “The industrial sector agrees with the government’s decision to hike power tariff,” said Suraj Vaidhya, president of the Federation of Nepalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, a t an interaction here on Friday. “The burden of system losses resulted by NEA ’s negligence should not be passed on to consumers.”
NEA has been criticised for its inability to control power leakage and for anomalies in its administration.
Former FNCCI President Kush Kumar Joshi asked the government to manage additional energy, either from captive or diesel plant, for this winter. “Industrialists are facing high costs for operating generators,” he said. “It would be cheaper for them if the government buys diesel plants.”
Energy Secretary Hari Ram Koirala asked power developers to start work on projects timely. “Otherwise, the government may scrap licenses of those who are not serious enough to develop projects,” he said.
On industrialists’ demand that the government handover the multi-fuel plant in Duhabi, Sunari, to the private sector, Koirala said a final decision will be taken after the committee formed to study the matter submits its report.
Mahendra Lal Shrestha, acting managing director of NEA , said the power utility has asked the government to bear the losses incurred while importing electricity from India. He said NEA has been working on several measures to help the industrial sector get rid of long outage hours.
“We have proposed introducing a mobile power generation plant,” he said. “We will take further step after the Electricity Tariff Fixation Commission fixes tariff for the energy generated by such plants.”
Gyandendra Lal Pradhan, chairman of FNCCI’s Energy Committee, accused the government of ignoring the plight of the energy sector. “The government spends billions of rupees in petroleum subsidy,” he said. “If it provides similar facility to the power sector, petroleum imports will come down, helping lower the trade deficit, especially with India.”
Posted on: 2012-07-14 08:34