SASEC Cross-Border Power Trade Working Group Meeting
14 Oct 2020
The third Meeting of the SASEC Cross Border Power Trade Working Group (SPT-WG) was held virtually on 14 October 2020, to finalize the SASEC Regional Power Trade Framework Agreement (RPTFA), and to discuss the way forward in SASEC energy cooperation as reflected in the draft Action Plan for SASEC Initiatives (APSI) 2021- 2023.
SASEC country delegations reviewed the latest version of the draft Regional Power Trade Framework Agreement (RPTFA), which will provide a broad framework for the SASEC countries to cooperate toward promoting cross-border electricity trade (CBET). Noting the key revisions made since the last SPT- WG meeting held in New Delhi in November 2019, the delegations commented on the content and language of the RPTFA and agreed to submit further comments, if any by 30 October 2020. A revised version of the agreement incorporating these comments will be circulated by ADB by 30 November 2020. The countries are expected to endorse a final draft by the next meeting of the working group in late 2020 or early 2021. This final draft of the RPTFA would be the basis for conducting internal clearances for the signing of the document at the SASEC Finance Ministers’ Meeting sometime in 2021.
The Meeting also discussed and reviewed:
- The progress/ way forward in SASEC Energy/ Power Cooperation: The meeting discussed the energy components of the Action Plan for SASEC Initiatives (APSI) 2021- 2023, which was developed to accelerate implementation of priority SASEC Operational Plan (OP) and SASEC Vision initiatives and to propose new initiatives to enhance resilience to disruptions (e.g., pandemics). Country delegations provided their views on the APSI, updated information on priority energy projects, and agreed to provide ADB with periodic updates on APSI and SASEC OP projects, for regular reporting to SASEC officials.
- The progress and proposed activities under RETA 9584: SASEC Regional Energy Cooperation: The meeting discussed the progress and status of activities under the RETA, pointing out their contributions to realizing flagship regional energy projects in the SAEC OP and Vision. Also taken up were the upcoming activities envisaged under the RETA, including those proposed by the countries. The participants concurred with the priority RETA activities identified, such as finalizing the RPTFA and undertaking assessment of feasibility of flagship energy projects.
Senior officials and representatives of energy agencies and power utilities of SASEC member countries participated in the Meeting, together with staff and consultants of the Asian Development Bank. Mr. Priyantha Wijayatunga, Director, Energy Division (SAEN), South Asia Department, ADB, gave the opening remarks and moderated the Meeting.