SAARC energy regulators meet in a bid to initiate regional power trade 

Nov 13, 2018 (LBO) – Sri Lanka hosted the third meeting of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) council of experts of energy regulators (Electricity) in Colombo, Tuesday to pave the way for initiating regional power trade through the implementation of SAARC framework agreement.

Apart from the infrastructure and regional power trading, the council will function to provide an enabling regulatory environment for realising the SAARC energy ring.

The Council will recommend a detailed road map for the implementation of SAARC Framework Agreement, comprising short, medium and long-term initiatives that need to be pursued in order to achieve the objectives of regional power trade within a specified timetable.

Sri Lanka the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka hosted the meeting with the technical and financial support of the Asian Development Bank.

The council also focuses on defining the appropriate roles and responsibilities and required performance of electricity regulators in South Asia in overseeing the development of cross-border power trading in South Asia.

It will also serve as the regional forum to discuss, interact, share knowledge and experiences and achieve consensus on harmonised rules and regulations across various areas that will enable bilateral and multilateral power trade.

Representatives from the SAARC countries, Government of Sri Lanka, Government of Afghanistan, Government of Pakistan, Government of the Republic of Maldives, Government of Nepal, Royal Government of Bhutan and Government of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh took part in the meeting.

The eight South Asian nations (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) collectively account for over one-fourth of the world’s population and the region is one of the fastest growing economies in the world, with an average annual growth rate of 6.8 percent as measured by GDP per capita world bank data says.