Dec 24, 2014 - The World Bank will extend a 38-year loan of USD 130 million (EUR 106.6m) to finance a 25-MWp solar project in Nepal and grid upgrades aimed at reducing electricity distribution losses in the country.
The lender on Monday approved the loan for the Nepal Grid Solar and Energy Efficiency Project. The credit has a 6-year grace period.
The first component of the plan involves the design, construction, commissioning, operation and maintenance of grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) plants with a combined capacity of 25 MWp. These will feed power directly to the Nepal Electricity Authority’s (NEA) distribution network.
It was previously reported by the Himalayan Times that the first 20 MW of solar capacity would be built by June 15, 2015, while the other 5 MW would be ready by September.
The second component of the programme includes the creation of a Distribution Loss Reduction Master Plan and transmission infrastructure improvements in selected NEA distribution centres.
The World Bank explained that solar energy has been identified as one of the best power generation sources to complement Nepal’s hydropower plant fleet. Solar radiation in the country is strongest in the winter when demand is at the highest but hydropower output is at the lowest levels.
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