The 720 MW Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project was handed over by the Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project Authority (MHPA) to Druk Green Power Corporation (DGPC), Bhutan on 27th December 2022. A handing over ceremony was held in Thimphu and witnessed by Lyonpo Loknath Sharma, Minister for Economic Affairs, Bhutan and Shri Sudhakar Dalela, Ambassador of India to Bhutan. A handing over document was signed between Managing Director, MHPA and Managing Director, DGPC.
The 720 MW Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project was jointly inaugurated by Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Bhutan Dr. Lotay Tshering in August 2019. The commissioning of the project has increased Bhutan’s Electrical Power Generation Capacity by 44% to 2,326 megawatts. Since its commissioning, the project has generated more than 9,500 Million Units of energy.
Speaking at the event, Lyonpo Loknath Sharma expressed his gratitude to all the officials, engineers, designers, and workers for delivering the Project. He also thanked Government of India for providing financial and technical support for the construction of the Project. Ambassador Shri Sudhakar Dalela described the project as a ‘benchmark project’ which was completed in an optimal cost and timeframe. He also spoke of emphasis laid by the Government of India in taking forward the India Bhutan renewable energy cooperation forward.
At a time when COVID – 19 pandemic led to fall in revenues of key economic sectors, the commissioning of Mangdechhu Hydropower Project led to an increase of 31% in hydropower revenues of Bhutan in 2020. In 2021, Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project exported electricity worth Rs. 12.13 billion to India, increasing Bhutan’s electricity exports to Rs. 24.43 billion.
The Project was awarded the prestigious Brunel Medal, 2020 by the Institute of Civil Engineers, London as a recognition to its excellence in civil engineering and project’s social and environmental credentials. The project will reduce about 2.4 million tons of Green House Gas emissions each year.
With the handing over of this project, both India and Bhutan have successfully completed four mega hydroelectric projects, taking forward our six decades old Hydropower Cooperation. The hydropower sector will continue to contribute in a significant way in Bhutan’s economic growth and development, based on the philosophy of Gross National Happiness.