A Successful Cross Border Power Project: the Bhutan – India Experience Essay

AGENDA FOR EXECUTIVE PEER EXCHANGE October 29 – November 3, 2007 – Bhutan GOAL: The Tala Hydroelectric project in Bhutan is the largest successful cross border electricity exchange project in South Asia. The 1020 mw project generates 4865 million kWh/yr and is a large portion of the revenue stream from cross border sale of electricity to India which makes up approximately 30% of Bhutan’s export earnings.

This percentage is likely to soar because both countries recently agreed to allow India to import almost 5,000 MW of hydel power from this country by 2020. Tala was funded by India and is executed by the Tala Hydroelectric Project Authority. The executive exchange will examine the intergovernmental process and agreements leading up to the joint venture, the financing and contracting that supported the project, along with the management and operations, including the load dispatch center in Bhutan that controls the power flow to India.

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By examining the Bhutan – India cross border exchange of electricity, South Asian executives will gain a better understanding of the mechanisms and policies necessary for a successful exchange of electricity in South Asia. After learning in depth about the organization, operation and development impacts of the individual players in the Bhutan – India exchange, the delegates will have the opportunity to identify potential actions and practices that might be applicable to the power sectors of their own South Asian countries.

Objectives: To learn approaches and techniques for: • Enhancing energy security through cross border trade • Investment & contracting of cross border electricity projects • Managing cross border electricity exchange Anticipated Outcomes: Knowledge & documentation on: • Financing strategies for cross border electricity projects • Contracting mechanisms for cross border electricity projects • Policies, procedures, organizational structure and practices potentially applicable to other parts of South Asia

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