India, Sri Lanka sign agreement on Trinco Thermal power plant

[TamilNet, Thursday, 14 February 2008, 16:01 GMT]
National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), India’s largest power producer, and Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) officially agreed Wednesday in Colombo that Vealoor in Trincomalee north will be the site for the establishment of the coal-fired power plant, sources in Colombo said. Although a Memorandum of Agreement was signed between the two parties in December 2006, the proposed project had stalled for nearly a year due to India’s disinclination to agree on Champoor in Trincomalee district, the site originally selected by Sri Lanka, diplomatic circles in Colombo said.

Indian Deputy Minister of Commerce, Jayaram Ramesh, speaking to Indian media Wednesday in Colombo said that the Thermal power plant, a 50-50 joint venture between NTCP and CEB, will be located in Vealloor village in Trincomalee north.

For the first time a written agreement has been officially reached on the agenda of the proposed Thermal plant, the first unit of which is expected to begin functioning in April 2012 and will produce 500 MW power in July 2012, the Deputy Minister said.

Minister of Power and Energy for Sri Lanka, Mr. W. D. G. Seneviratne, in an interview to BBC Tamil service said that the proposed Thermal power plant will be established in Nilaave’li in Trincomalee district and that a new jetty will be built in Champoor for unloading the coal needed for the power plant.

He also said that construction work is expected to begin later this year.

The jetty project is integrated with the power plant project and be located near the power plant. It is not possible now to decide where the jetty should be located, Deputy Minister Jayaram Ramesh said.

The feasibility report of the project will consider modes of transportation of the coal to be imported from Australia and this will determine the location of the new jetty, the deputy minister added.

A press release issued by the Indian High Commission in Colombo 29 December 2006 said that a Memorandum of Agreement was signed between NTPC Ltd., (a Government of India Undertaking), CEB and Government of Sri Lanka at the Presidential Secretariat for setting up of a 500 MW coal based thermal power plant in Trincomalee. The power plant is expected to commence operations from 2011. With the signing of the Agreement will commence the process of site selection in Trincomalee which will be done on the basis of techno-economic and environmental feasibility studies and other relevant matters including availability of infrastructure etc.


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