The Third BIMSTEC Ministers’ Meeting on Energy was held by the Government of Nepal on 20 April 2022 in a virtual mode. The Bhutanese delegation was led by the Secretary, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Royal Government of Bhutan.
The Ministers’ Meeting was preceded by the Fifth Meeting of BIMSTEC Senior Officials on Energy on 19 April 2022. The Bhutanese delegation was led by Director, Department of Hydropower and Power Systems, Ministry of Economic Affairs.
Officials from the Department of Hydropower and Power Systems, MoEA and the Department of Regional Cooperation, MFA attended the meetings.
Bhutan welcomed the progress made towards undertaking the BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection Master Plan Study and the operationalization of the BIMSTEC Energy Center. Considering the region’s high dependency on non-renewable energy, Bhutan expressed the urgency required from all Member States to collectively work towards adopting a sustainable approach to achieving energy security and greater economic integration in the region. Bhutan also called upon all the Member States to seize the opportunity to move beyond the conventional means of developing and trading energy by harnessing available resources in a cost-effective and efficient manner.
The Ministerial Meeting, agreeing on the need for a Regional Grid Interconnection for securing energy security in the region, directed the BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection Coordination Committee (BGICC) to conclude the BIMSTEC Grid Interconnection Master Plan Study with the support of the Asian Development Bank at the earliest. The meeting also directed the BGICC to conclude the BIMSTEC Policy for Transmission of Electricity and BIMSTEC Policy for Trade, Exchange of Electricity and Tariff Mechanism. Further, the BIMSTEC Expert Group on Energy was tasked to develop a Comprehensive Plan for Energy Cooperation on energy trade in the region.