India proposes power grid for SAARC

India today proposed a robust and integrated power grid system covering member countries of the South Asia Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), in order to address the problem of power deficiency in the region.

A SAARC power grid linking Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka has the estimated potential to install at least 1,00,000 MW in the region for common use among its member countries, minister of state for power KC Venugopal said.

The minister was speaking at a round table conference on `Promoting Investment Opportunity in Power Sector in South Asia: Leveraging Cross Border Power Trading'.

India, he said, faces a power shortages of over 8 per cent, and up to 10 per cent in peak hours, despite an installed capacity of 1,72,000 MW.

The revised 11th Five Year Plan has raised the target of capacity addition to more than 60,000 MW - more than the total capacity added in the previous two Plans.

While acknowledging that the issue of cross border power trading is a complex one involving market, technology, finance and geo-political issues, he said there has been instances of success as well.

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