During the question-hour session of National Assembly held yesterday, the Economic Affairs Minister, Norbu Wangchuk, said that the ministry had carry out necessary works in the last one year after laying the foundation stone. The works were important for starting the project, such as preparing tender documents, building roads and bridges to the project site.
Member of Parliament (MP) of Bumdeling-Jamkhar, Drupthob, asked Economic Affairs Minister to provide a definite confirmation on when the actual works on the Kholongchhu hydropower project will start.
He said that the actual works on the project have not started as yet, despite laying the foundation stone of Kholongchhu Hydropower project almost a year back.
Lyonpo Norbu Wangchuk said for the project to commence, there has to be the infrastructure in place, like road and bridges. Therefore, about 40 km of roads has been constructed to connect to the project site.
Lyonpo said that the two MPs from Trashiyangtse have enquired about the project even outside of the Parliament. He said such a concern is good as it is for the benefit of the people.
Lyonpo said that Kholongchhu is the first joint venture hydro project among other four projects which consist of Wangchhu, Bunakha, Chamkharchhu and the Kholongchhu.
He said that Kholongchhu hydro project is second project for the six eastern Bhutan. The 60 MegaWatt (MW) Kurichhu project was first that started in 2002. Kholongchhu has the electricity production capacity of 600 MW, which is 10 times more than the Kurichhu project.
Just as the Kurichhu project brought in economic development to the people, the Kholongchhu hydro project is expected to bring road connectivity, business opportunity, economy development and employment opportunities for the people in the eastern dzongkhag.
Lyonpo informed the House that a board would be instituted soon for the distribution and implementation of works of the project. He further added that discussion regarding Trashiyangtse’s Khetshang town development was carried out for about one year and is almost done.