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Recent Updates of BIMSTEC grid interconnection

The Union Cabinet has approved the proposal of the Ministry of Power for signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with member states of BIMSTEC for establishing BIMSTEC grid interconnections. The MoU will be signed at the 3rd BIMSTEC Energy Ministers’ Meeting that will be held in Nepal shortly.

The Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) is a sub-regional group of seven countries in South Asia and South East Asia lying in the littoral and adjacent areas of the Bay of Bengal viz. Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan and Nepal. It was established on 6th June 1997 through the Bangkok Declaration. It is headquartered at Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Timeline

In 2005, during the first BIMSTEC Energy Ministers’ Conference held in New Delhi, a Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation in BIMSTEC was formulated. As a part of the plan, under the BIMSTEC Trans-Power Exchange and Development Project, a task force under the leadership of Thailand was formed comprising the representatives of member countries to come up with a report on draft MoU for grid interconnections.

After a total of five meetings, the draft MoU for the establishment of the BIMSTEC grid interconnection was finalised on March 16, 2015.

The leaders reached a consensus to expedite the signing of the MoU on BIMSTEC grid interconnection during the BIMSTEC Leaders’ Retreat, 2016 held in Goa.

In the fourth meeting of BIMSTEC held in January 2017, the MoU was discussed and finalised.

Salient features

The MoU provides a broad framework of cooperation for the implementation of grid interconnections for the purpose of carrying out trade in electricity. Its objective is to promote rational and optimal power transmission in the BIMSTEC region.

The MoU for the establishment of the BIMSTEC grid interconnection facilitates:

  • Optimization of energy resources in the BIMSTEC region for mutual benefits on non-discriminatory basis subject to laws, rules and regulations of the respective Parties;
  • Promotion of efficient, economic, and secure operation of power system by developing regional electricity networks;
  • Necessity of optimization of capital investment for additional capacity generation across the region; and
  • Power exchange through cross-border interconnections.

 

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Union Cabinet apporves agreement between India and Poland for cooperation in agriculture

The Union Cabinet has given its approval for signing of an Agreement between India and Poland on cooperation in the field of agriculture and allied sectors.

Decision in this regard was taken by the Union Cabinet meeting chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi. 

Key Facts
  • The agreement covers various activities in the field of agriculture and allied sector including exchange of information on the current situation in agriculture.
  • It also includes exchange of information on the phytosanitary conditions of crops, threats posed by harmful organisms and animal infectious diseases.
  • It also covers participation in fairs, exhibitions, seminars and conferences related to agriculture and agri-food processing.
  • It also includes undertaking and developing joint economic initiatives including the support or agrifood trade between the states of the Contracting Parties.
  • The Agreement provides for constitution of a Joint Working Group (JWG) comprising of representatives of both countries.
  • The JWG will prepare plans of cooperation and also provide solutions to the problems arising during the implementation of the Agreement.

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