There is significant untapped potential for deepening bilateral ties between the state of Himachal Pradesh and Norway. Ambassador Kamsvåg and Commercial Counsellor Tryti therefore had a Norwegian business delegation with them during last week’s state visit to Himachal Pradesh. The aim was to explore commercial opportunities in the renewable energy sector.
In addition to Embassy staff, the delegation consisted of participants from Statkraft, Kongsberg Digital, Heimdall and SINTEF. The companies participated during relevant meetings with key government representatives and presented their respective technologies as well as perspectives on the Indian market. Prospects for enhanced economic cooperation as well as issues relating to climate change and renewable energy were discussed.
The Indian stakeholders expressed great interest in the Norwegian companies and technologies. State government representatives emphasised the importance of creating stable framework conditions for investment. During our visit, the Himachal Pradesh government approved amendments to the state’s Hydropower Policy.
We were also given a tour of the power plant “Allain Duhangan” near Manali. It is owned and managed by Malana Power Company Limited, which in turn is owned 49 percent by Statkraft and 51 percent by Bhilwara Energy. After a briefing on the project’s background and an interesting tour of this run-of-the-river plant, we were introduced to selected CSR projects. We learned a lot about Statkraft’s operations in India and ambitions going forward.
During his visit to Himachal Pradesh, the Ambassador visited Shimla, Manali, Patlikuhal and Dharamsala. In addition to the abovementioned programme, he had meetings with several other representatives from the public sector, political parties, NGOs and the media.