Energy policy in South Asia

June 12, 2012 | By More

South Asia is ranked as one of the regions with lowest per capita consumption of Energy particularly in form of electricity despite the fact that region is blessed with enormous energy potential for generating enormous amount of electricity.

Presently, South Asian countries are producing electricity less than 50% of their available potential. On the other hand, the region has witnessed encouraging GDP growth (from 5.5% to 6.5%) during 2004-2010. To keep the region on the trajectory of economic growth, un-interrupted supply of energy at affordable price, is key to sustain this economic growth. Presently, amongst eight SAARC nations, India, Pakistan, Nepal and Bangladesh are faced with acute shortage of electricity to the tune of 40000 MW. They apply various energy mixes predominantly using imported oil, which in turn is persistently increasing their import bill.

Due to 8-12 hours power cuts in Bangladesh, Nepal and Pakistan, the commercial business has to pay 35% extra by using diesel and oil generators, thus adding to their operational expenses.

Provision of supply of energy has been the mainstay of the energy policy of every country. On regional level, SAARC energy Centers have been created in the region, which are trying to coordinate, establish regional pool of information, expertise and have suggested the roadmap by establishing SAARC Energy Grid, wherein surplus energy would be pooled and transmitted to the country, requiring electricity supply. Although this is a great noble cause, it seems difficult to articulate this until and unless, the South Asian Nations exhibit greater will for providing enabling environment to encourage production, trade and distribution of electricity through an efficient and fair mechanism.

Since the Private Sector is the most important stakeholder of Energy production, its involvement through Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) model need to be encouraged on policy making level. The SAARC Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SAARC CCI) organized string of conferences in Bhutan and Pakistan to sensitise the Private Sector about Energy issues in South Asia and share their vision to suggest a policy mechanism to the Governments in South Asia.

This policy report of SAARC CCI on “Energy Policy: The way forward to Energy Trade in South Asia” provides some unique ideas and add value to the work and initiatives taken by various organizations involved.

To read complete report, click here.

Posted by Majid Shabbir
Official Moderator
Business Support Organization Forum

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Category: Energy

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