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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2643

Plans afoot to create a 'power pool' in South Asia

By Munza Mushtaq - Reporting from Colombo for Asian Tribune

Colombo, 01 August, (Asiantribune.com): Under the South Asia Regional Initiative for Energy (SARI/Energy) Energ Markets Partnership funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), 15 executives from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan & Sri Lanka met with executives from the Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP).

The meeting hosted by the Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP) and Eskom, South Africa's state owned electricity supply company, was held June 26 to 30, 2006 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

During the course of the five-day visit, the participants discussed approaches for attracting investment, managing energy markets in deficit power situations and analyzing power trading strategies. These discussions culminated with the basic framework documents for the development of a South Asian power pool provided by the Southern Africa Power Pool to the South Asian executives.

SAPP's shared experiences with the South Asians provided them with a comprehensive model for the future establishment of a power pool in South Asia. This included:

The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) executed by all participating governments to establish the SAPP regional power pool. The MOU sets forth the power pool's purposes and the responsibilities of the participating countries.

The inter-utility MOU executed by all participating SAPP utilities that establishes the power pool management and operating principles, including the coordination of planning and operation to maximize reliability and the equitable sharing of costs and benefits for all members.

The agreement between SAPP operating members that establishes the specific rules of operation and pricing.

The specific SAPP operating guidelines, including system control, system security, emergency operations, operations planning, and telecommunications.

An overview of their regional association of regulators that works to provide cohesiveness to the national regulators efforts affecting the power pool.

A summary of the operations of the short-term energy market (STEM) currently being used by SAPP, and its relationship to bilateral contracts SAPP also shared numerous approaches for attracting investments, techniques for managing energy markets, power trading strategies, and pricing mechanisms.

The Southern Africa Power Pool demonstrates a unique regional and team approach to meet their energy needs – an approach that have overcome political and economic boundaries, similar to the challenges facing South Asia. The SARI/Energy executives will be able to use these examples to further energy security and give new investors confidence in developing energy markets in Asia.

- Asian Tribune -

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