India, Sri Lanka to ink agreement on 500 MW Sampur power project


By S Venkat Narayan Our Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI, October 6: India and Sri Lanka will on Monday ink an agreement for the execution of the INR 40-billion 500 MW thermal power project at Sampur in Trincomalee, official sources said here today.

India’s state-run NTPC and Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) had signed an agreement in 2011 to set up a coal-based power project, which had got delayed due to various reasons. About two years after the agreement was signed, the initiative—NTPC’s first overseas coal-fired power project—saw little progress due to various disagreements between the two partners. They have now resolved all the outstanding issues.

The proposed signing of pacts for the Sri Lanka plant comes close on the heels of India and Bangladesh inaugurating two power projects on October 5 and reflect stronger regional co-operation in this sector.

Indian External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid along with his Sri Lankan counterpart GL Peiris will be present in Colombo when the agreements are signed on Monday. The agreements will be related to power purchase, land lease and coal supply. Electricity generated from the plant will be supplied to CEB. It will have two units of 250 MW each.

Coal for the project will be imported and supplied by Lanka Coal Company (LCC), while land will be given by the Sri Lankan government on a long term lease.

NTPC has an installed generation capacity of 41,184 MW in India.

The breakthrough came after both the sides held talks in New Delhi recently and decided to take up the project in right earnest. Both sides discussed and finalised the changes for the power purchase agreement (PPA) and the implementation agreement for the 2X250 MW project.

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