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South Asia: Growth in Transmission Network [free access]

November 11, 2019

The South Asian countries have witnessed a significant expansion in their transmission line length network, which stood at about 534,810 km in 2018 at a voltage level of 100 kV and above. The region saw an addition of about 127,623 km over the past five years from 407,187 km in 2013, showing a CAGR of about 5.6 per cent. India, with 498,651 km of lines, has the largest transmission network, accounting for 93 per cent of the total transmission network in the region.

 

India is followed by Pakistan and Bangladesh, with a share of 3.2 per cent and 1.9 per cent respectively, in the total transmission network in the region. However, it is worth noting here, that the transmission network of Nepal showed the highest CAGR of 10.3 per cent over the 2013-18 period, with an addition of 1,184 km since 2013.

 

Table 1: Growth in transmission line length (km) for 2013-18

Country

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017

2018

Afghanistan1 

1,884

1,884

1,884

1,884

1,906

2,026

Bangladesh⁴

8,191

8,397

8,649

8,827

9,315

10,010

Bhutan

704

744

778

744

744

764

India²,

377,569

396,814

420,420

447,828

474,263

498,651

Nepal⁴

1,874

1,874

2,057

2,195

2,615

3,058

Pakistan³

14,529

14,568

14,583

16,111

17,554

17,362

Sri Lanka

2,436

2,857

2,912

2,912

2,914

2,939

Notes: For Afghanistan, India and Nepal, data is as of March 31 for the year mentioned; For Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, data is as of June 30 for the year mentioned

1­– For Afghanistan, 2013-18 line length has been estimated based on the projects that were commissioned during the year; 2– For India, line length at 100/110/132 kV voltage level for 2018 has been estimated based on past CAGRs; 3–Pakistan’s line length at 132 kV for 2017 and 2018 has been estimated based on the projects that were commissioned during the year; 4– For India, Bangladesh and Nepal, data was available in circuit km which was converted into km. 

Source: Central Statistical Office, Afghanistan; DABS; Bangladesh Power Development Board; National Statistics Bureau, Bhutan; CEA; MoSPI; NEA; National Electric Power Regulatory Authority; CEB; Global Transmission Research

 

As of 2018, majority (33 per cent) of the transmission network was at a voltage level of 110-132 kV, whose share in the total network decreased by 5 per cent since 2013. The share of 220/230 kV was 31 per cent of the total network in 2018 with a decrease by 3 per cent since 2013, while network at the 400 kV level increased from 23 per cent to 26 per cent during 2013-18.

 

The 765 kV extra high-voltage (EHV) and 500 kV and 800 kV high voltage direct current (HVDC) lines, formed 9 per cent of the total regional network in 2018 and only a part of India’s transmission network. This network grew at a CAGR of 24.5 per cent from 15,891 in 2013 to 47,553 in 2018. It is also during 2013-18 that India introduced ±800 kV DC lines in its transmission network.

 

Bangladesh also introduced transmission lines at a voltage level of 400 kV during the 2013-18 period. Nepal’s sole transmission operator, Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), added 220 kV and 400 kV to its grid network in the past three years, which earlier was only operating at the 132 kV voltage level.

 

Table 2: Transmission line length (km) by voltage level as of 2018

Voltage

Afghanistan1 

Bangladesh⁴

Bhutan

India²,

Nepal⁴

Pakistan³ 

Sri Lanka

100/110/132 kV AC

1,275

6,374

365

161,939

2,765

837

2,338

220/230 kV AC

751

 3,009

25

151,880

224

10,753

601

400 kV AC

-

628

74

137,280

69

-

-

500 kV AC

-

-

-

-

-

5,772

-

±500 kV DC

-

-

-

9,432

-

-

-

765 kV AC

-

-

-

35,059

-

-

-

±800 kV DC

-

-

-

3,062

-

-

-

Notes: For Afghanistan, India and Nepal, data is as of March 31 for the year mentioned; For Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, data is as of June 30 for the year mentioned; AC – Alternating current; DC – Direct current

1­– For Afghanistan, 2018 line length has been estimated based on the projects that were commissioned during the year; 2–  For India, line length at 100/110/132 kV voltage level has been estimated based on past CAGRs. 3– Pakistan’s line length at 132 kV has been estimated based on the projects that were commissioned during the year; 4– For India, Bangladesh and Nepal, data was available in circuit km which was converted into km. 

Source: Central Statistical Office, Afghanistan; DABS; Bangladesh Power Development Board; National Statistics Bureau, Bhutan; CEA; MoSPI; NEA; National Electric Power Regulatory Authority; CEB; Global Transmission Research

 

Figure 1: Transmission network, by voltage in 2018

 

Source: Central Statistical Office, Afghanistan; DABS; Bangladesh Power Development Board; National Statistics Bureau, Bhutan; CEA; MoSPI; NEA; National Electric Power Regulatory Authority; CEB; Global Transmission Research