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India looks to establish overhead electricity link with Sri Lanka

India’s National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government has shifted its policy to explore establishing cross-border electricity with Sri Lanka.

This plan comes after the rejection of an undersea power transmission link which was seen as too expensive. The aim of this project is to counter Chinese influence in the region through its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). China’s BRI project has provided billions of dollars in infrastructure development including railways, ports and power grids across the developing countries in Asia and Africa as well as some countries in Europe.

India’s electricity distribution companies are also suffering an economic downturn and are hoping that the opportunity to sell to Sri Lanka will improve their finances. Utpal Bhaskar, a journalist for the mint, an Indian financial newspaper, Indian electricity distribution companies owe  Rs 56,7100 million.

India has already been supplying power to Bangladesh and Nepal and aims to expand to establish electricity links to countries such as Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.

Sri Lanka’s state-run Ceylon Electricity Board has a power generation capacity of 35.8 gigawatts whilst India’s stands at 360.45 GW. Through a national grid, India is able to transfer 99,000 MW throughout the country.

Read more here.