India minister hails funding for 412-MW Rampur

India Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde complimented Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam Ltd. (SJVN) for being India’s first hydropower developer to secure World Bank funding tied to Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) benefits for its 412-MW Rampur hydroelectric project in Himachal Pradesh State.

In a statement on review of SJVN projects, Shinde encouraged SJVN, operator of the 1,500-MW Nathpa Jhakri project, to secure more hydro developments with concessional funding.

The World Bank signed a US$400 million loan agreement for Rampur in January. (HNN 1/16/08) The run-of-river project, which requires no dam or reservoir on the Satluj River, is to provide renewable, low-carbon energy to India’s power-short Northern Electricity Grid. SJVN called for equipment bids in May. (HNN 4/16/08)

The power minister said SJVN, a joint venture of the federal government and Himachal Pradesh State, is emerging as a major regional player, having won a contract to build the 402-MW Arun 3 hydropower project in Nepal. (HNN 8/29/08)

In other international developments, SJVN said it is updating or preparing detailed project reports for two hydroelectric projects in Bhutan, 900-MW Wangchu and 486-MW Kholangchu.

SJVN said generation from its first major project, Nathpa Jhakri on the Satluj River, exceeded 28 billion kWh in September, in less than five years since it began operation in Himachal Pradesh State. (HNN 6/20/08) Since completing Nathpa Jhakri, SJVN said it has grown from a single-project company to a national corporation.

In addition to building Rampur, SJVN is developing the 252-MW Devasari (or Devsari) project on the Pindar River (HNN 3/29/06), 45-MW Jakhol Sankari (or Jakhol Sankri) on the Supin River (HNN 4/12/07), and 56-MW Naitwar Mori on the Rupin River (HNN 9/23/08), all in Uttarakhand State.

The developer also has been allocated the 775-MW Luhri project (HNN 6/4/08) and the 1,020-MW Khab project, both on the Satluj River, and the 40-MW Dhaulasidh project in Hamirpur District for preparation of detailed project reports and execution. All three are in Himachal Pradesh. SJVN said it plans to sign memoranda of understanding soon for Luhri and Dhaulasidh.

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