December 6, 2019
Nepal is one of the richest countries in water resources in the world, It stands in the second position after Brazil in water resources. But economic development of Nepal largely depends on the development of water resources. There are more than 6000 rivers in Nepal. The water resources can be utilized in the development of agriculture, industry and trade.
Water resource is very important in the overall development of Nepal. Water resource can be used for electricity generation, irrigation purposes and drinking purposes as well. It is regarded as the basic source of energy.
Water resources available in Nepal can be used for generating hydroelectricity. Providing irrigation facility and supplying sufficient drinking water to its people. The present situation and utilization of water resources in Nepal has been presented below:
Hydroelectricity: The main use of water resources in Nepal is hydroelectricity generation. There is greater potential to generate hydro-electricity in Nepal but by the end of 10th plan the total installed capacity of hydro-electricity reached about 600 MW which is only 0.6% of the total potential. The hydro-electricity has supplied only 1% of the total energy consumption of the country. About 40% of the total population has access to electricity facility in Nepal.
Irrigation facilities: Irrigation is the second important sector where water resources can be used for the development of agriculture sector. Various efforts have been made for the development of irrigation since the 1st plan in the country. But about 45% of the total arable land has irrigation facility in Nepal.
Drinking Water: The pure drinking water is a basic need of the people.Nepal is rich in water resources but the majority of people do not get pure drinking water. By the end of 10th plan about 75% of the population has got drinking water facility in Nepal.
There are various problems for the development of water resources in Nepal which are as follows:
Lack of capital: The development of water resources requires large amount of capital for constructing hydro-electricity projects,irrigation projects and drinking water projects but Nepal is a poor country. Majority of Nepalese people are poor they have no capacity to save and invest. Thus, there is a lack of capital for the development of water resources in Nepal.
Lack of technical manpower: The development of water resource needs high level technology and technical manpower but there is lack of such high level technology and technicians in Nepal. Therefore, Nepal is compelled to import expensive technicians from abroad to operate the projects of hydroelectricity and irrigation.
Lack of Modern Equipment: The development of water resource needs modern machines tools and equipment. But there is lack of such equipment in Nepal. We have to import these equipment from foreign countries but there is a lack of capital for this purpose.
Lack of transport facility: Most of the hydroelectricity projects lie in the hilly region without transport facilities. The transport facilities will have to be developed before launching the projects. This increases the project cost significantly.
Lack of market: The domestic market of the country is very limited. The purchasing power of the people of the people is very low.The only exportable market is India. But the Indian attitude is not favorable. Thus,lack of market is another problem for the development of hydroelectricity in Nepal.
Defective government policy: The government policy is defective for the development of water resource because of political instability. There is a defect in formulation and desire of water resource projects. There is lack of adequate statistical data.
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