Electricity import in winter to almost double

Power revenue dipped by 33%

The export sale of hydropower decreased by a staggering Nu 887.83 million compared to the same period twelve months ago

Hydropower revenue saw a dip of about Nu 996.47 million (M) in October this year as compared to the same month in 2022. According to reports, the domestic revenue from these projects plummeted by 40.78%, with revenue generated through export in the same period decreasing from Nu 3,439.77M last year to Nu 2443.3M this year.

Between January and October 2023, the six major hydropower projects in Bhutan collectively generated a revenue of Nu 22.07 billion (B) from both domestic sales and exports. This is a stark contrast to Nu 25.089B which was generated during the same period in 2022.

The overall production of electricity also experienced a decline, with a drop of over 888 million units in 2023 compared to the previous month of the same year.

The revenue generation and electricity production units include Basochhu Hydropower Plant (BHP), Chhukha Hydropower Plant (CHP), Kurichhu Hydropower Plant (KHP), Tala Hydropower Plant (THP), and Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project Authority (MHPA), amongst others.

From the six hydropower projects, MHPA generated the highest revenue through export sales in October with about Nu 1.199B, while KHP generated the least with about Nu 0.42M through export sales.

In terms of domestic sales, THP generated the highest revenue with about Nu 156.17M in October, while MHPA made the least revenue with Nu 104.2M in the month of October this year.

In October this year, THP generated the highest power with about 552.19 million units and 827 million, compared to about 592.17 million units in the same month last year.

Similarly, the least power was generated by KHP in October this year, with about 42.33 million units, compared to 46.39 million units in the same month last year.

According to the State of the Nation’s report 2023, the annual electricity generation from the plants under operation in 2022 was 10,752 million units, of which 3,295 million units were consumed domestically and 7,819 million units were exported to India.

From the total gross revenue of about Nu 27.88B generated in 2022, MHP alone contributed about Nu 12.54B in 2022.

Meanwhile, three phase-I small hydroelectric projects with a total generation capacity of 104 MW are under construction, and financing instruments are being explored, including raising capital through issuing renewable energy bonds. The three projects are expected to be commissioned within 2025.

In addition, four more small hydroelectric projects, namely the 45 MW Gamri-I, the 26 MW Druk Bindu-I and II, the 20 MW Begana, and the 90 MW Jomori, are nearing completion of their feasibility studies. Following this, construction will start right away. Continued negotiations are being held with Indian financial institutions regarding potential funding sources to restart the 600 MW Kholongchhu hydropower project, the report stated.

Nidup Lhamo from Thimphu