The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government of India have signed a $220-million loan agreement to improve energy security, quality of supply, efficiency, and resilience of power sector in Tripura.
Rajat Kumar Mishra, Additional Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, the Ministry of Finance, and Hoe Yun Jeong, Officer-in-Charge, India Resident Mission, ADB, have signed an agreement of the Tripura Power Distribution Strengthening and Generation Efficiency Improvement Project.
After signing the loan agreement, Rajat Kumar Mishra stated that the project would support the government of Tripura's efforts to strengthen its power sector through replacement of inefficient power plants, strengthening of the distribution network and installation of smart meters that would help increase generation capacity, reduce distribution losses and to meet the increasing electricity demand to boost the state economy.
"The Project will fund the replacement of Rokhia power plant with a highly efficient combined cycle gas turbine that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions through fuel saving, modernize the state's power distribution network and build institutional capacity and overall business process of the project executing agencies," Hoe Yun Jeong said.
The statement of the finance ministry released on Tuesday evening said it would also promote gender equality through pilot testing of gender and socially inclusive workplace practices. The project will support at least 15 selected women self-help groups (SHGs) under Tripura rural livelihood mission targeting socio-economic empowerment of the rural poor and women of the state that will include farming and non-farming sector, the ministry said.
A reliable electricity supply will lead to social and economic benefits and improved conditions for schools, hospitals, and other social services.
The project components will be designed to withstand heavy rainfall, lightning, and storms with high-speed wind to help the region remain resilient to potential climate change risks. According to the statement, underground distribution cabling will be installed by the horizontal directional drilling method or tunnelling method to minimise road openings and reduce socio-environmental impacts during project implementation.
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