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Updated: June 23, 2014 00:14 IST

‘Investment in hydropower projects welcome’

Santosh Patnaik
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Nepal Consul-General Chandra Kumar Ghimire. - Photo: C.V. SUBRAHMANYAM
The Hindu Nepal Consul-General Chandra Kumar Ghimire. - Photo: C.V. SUBRAHMANYAM

Nepal is ready to roll out a red carpet to Indian investments in hydropower projects in the Himalayan country.

“We have potential to generate 80,000 MW. Studies conducted by experts have confirmed that it is financially and technically viable to undertake projects to produce 45,000 MW immediately,” Nepal’s Consul-General Chandra Kumar Ghimire has said.

Mr. Ghimire, who was on a two-day visit to Visakhapatnam to explore making the Visakhapatnam Port the second gateway port for export and import cargo after Kolkata-Haldia, told The Hindu that at present Nepal was generating 800-900 MW.

Several projects had been undertaken since peace process began in 2006.

“We are confident of becoming power surplus by achieving generation of 1,600 MW,” he stated.

India is Nepal’s largest business partner.

“Sixty-three to 64 per cent of our imports and 60 per cent of exports are from India. The rupee exchange rate is also attractive for Indian investors. One Indian rupee is equivalent to 160 paise in Nepal.”

Pinning high hopes on the outcome of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s proposed visit to Kathmandu in August, the second overseas trip after Bhutan, he said they were the biggest exporter of processed juice to India.

“Our country is famous for high altitudes and adventure tourism. One can invest a lot in lentil, herbal, spice, and cash crops. We have thrown up a window of opportunity in the service sector. Zero tariff is an added attraction,” he said.

“At one time, our students were going to other countries for higher education. Now, we are getting students from India and other countries to study engineering and medicine,” he stated.

Due to political stability, several foreign countries are evincing interest to invest in Nepal.

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