The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $132.8 million loan to finance 24X7 Power for All Meghalaya, a grid modernisation project unveiled by the Indian government and Meghalaya state government.
The ADB loan will be used to improve power quality and upgrade the distribution network with the aim of providing a good quality, reliable, and affordable power supply to all electricity consumers.
Although Meghalaya has achieved 100% electrification, the state’s per capita electricity consumption of 832 kWh/pa is low compared to the national average of 1122 kWh in 2017, and remote rural areas in the state suffer from frequent power interruptions. Distribution networks are overloaded and substations in rural areas use outdated technology, resulting in high aggregate technical and commercial losses.
To answer this problem, some 23 substations will be constructed and 45 substations will be renovated and modernised. Up to 2214 ks of distribution lines will be installed and up to 180 000 electromechanical meters will be replaced with smart meters.
The loan will be supplemented by a $2 million grant from ADB’s Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction. This grant will finance mini-grids that will improve power quality and support income generation, especially for women and other socially disadvantaged groups, using renewable energy sources in three villages and three schools.
The project also undertakes to develop a distribution sector road map and a financial road map for the Meghalaya Power Distribution Corp.