The Power Ministry is expected to complete the feasibility study for putting in place infrastructure for inter-connectivity of grids between India and Sri Lanka to allow smooth exchange of power between the two neighbours.
Officials in the Power Ministry said that although the agreement for putting in place such a system had taken place almost a year ago, the final study report would be out by December 2011 giving momentum to the Rs. 4000 crore project that would bring about exchange of nearly 1000 MW of power.
“The final document would be ready by December that would go into the aspects of feasibility of the project, financial implications, investment and economic benefits and how to execute this ambitious project,” the official remarked.
Both India and Sri Lanka had way back in June 2010, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The agreement, on ground, was signed between the state-run Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (PGCIL) and Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) for conducting the feasibility study. The date for submission of feasibility study was decided by the Task Force and Steering Committee after their meetings in August that time.
The Task Force and Steering Committee set up for the proposed India-Sri Lanka electricity grid interconnection comprise members from both the governments and state-run power entities from the two nations. As per the document, the feasibility study envisages laying cable at a depth of 25 metres below the Mean Sea Level for 500 metre span while crossing the Setu Samudram Canal. India-Sri Lanka electricity grid interconnection would span 360 Km of lines, including 120 Km of sea route.
Power Grid and CEB are the executing agencies for the study, which would cost roughly about $3 million and the amount would be equally shared by Indian and Sri Lankan governments. In a major step for India-Sri Lanka co-operation in the power sector, NTPC and CEB had last month announced plans to set up a 500 MW coal-based power project in the neighbouring nation.