Tycoon Gautam Adani plans to start exporting electricity from a coal-fired plant in eastern India to Bangladesh before the end of the year, helping to alleviate energy shortages in the South Asian nation. Adani Power Ltd. will commission a 1.6 gigawatt facility in Jharkhand state and a dedicated transmission line for the exports by Dec. 16, Adani said in a Twitter post late on Monday after meeting Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in New Delhi.
The project underscores India’s push to use infrastructure as part of its diplomatic outreach to neighbors. Adani — Asia’s richest person controlling a business empire spanning ports, infrastructure and energy — is also involved in investments in Sri Lanka.
Bangladesh has been suffering energy shortages as the price of fuels like gas and coal surged following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It remains heavily dependent on imported fossil fuels for electricity and is aiming to double its power generation capacity by 2041 to support its export-oriented economy, according to the US Department of Commerce.
Jharkhand is one of India’s biggest coal-mining regions, but the plant will mainly use fuel imported from overseas, according to a 2017 approval document from the environment ministry. Adani’s project has been criticized due to the high costs of transporting the coal by sea from places like Australia and South Africa and then by train to the plant.