Bhutan, India to Further Deepen Energy, Connectivity, Trade Ties
5 April 2023
The visit of His Excellency King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck of Bhutan to India Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April advanced the bilateral cooperation of the two countries, addresing matters of mutual interest and sketching a roadmap for the next steps. In a tweet, Prime Minister Modi highlighted their “warm and productive meeting” and the importance India places on its close friendship with Bhutan. Their meeting discussed various priorities, including hydropower cooperation and connectivity, that would allow India to step up its support for Bhutan’s 13th five year plan.
Outcomes of the meeting included:
- Agreement on an upward revision of tariff of Chhukha hydropower plant;
- India to positively consider Bhutan's request to sell power from the Basochhu hydropower plant, potentially via India’s energy exchange mechanism;
- Expansion of energy partnership to include non-hydropower-renewables, such as solar, as well as deepening cooperation in the field of e-mobility;
- Expediting the finalization of modalities for new hydroelectric projects, hydropower projects, including the Sankosh hydroelectric project;
- An additional standby credit facility as requested by Bhutan;
Setting up the first Integrated Check Post (ICP) along India-Bhutan border somewhere near Jaigaon;
- India, in consultation with Bhutan, will work towards expediting the proposed Kokrajhar-Gelephu rail link project; and
- Development of a long-term sustainable arrangements for export of agricultural commodities from Bhutan.