Last updated on May, 17 2021
LADAKH State Report | March, 2021
Ladakh, located at the northernmost part of India, is the largest and second least populous union territory and was formed on October 31, 2019. The diverse topology, with high-altitude cold desert located in the Great Himalayas, and picturesque locations make it a favoured destination among domestic and foreign tourists. The Pangong Tso Lake and world’s highest motorable road, Khardongla (18,350 feet), are the key tourist attractions for all tourists.
Ladakh has ~320 clear sunny days and receives an average daily global solar radiation of 2022 kWh/m2/annum; these factors have made Ladakh a favourable spot for solar power generation in India. Also, abundance of wind resource due to valley terrain landform creates a potential for harnessing wind energy in Ladakh.
In February 2021, an MoU was signed between Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and the UT administration of Ladakh to develop a geothermal field development project with a power potential of 200 MW. The project will be implemented in three phases where Phase-1 includes the development of 1 MW plant with ONGC Energy Centre is the implementing agency for this pilot project. Phase-2 involves deeper and lateral exploration of geothermal reservoir by drilling optimal number of wells and setting up of a higher capacity demo plant in Ladakh. Phase-3 is designed as the final commercial project as per discovered capacity during Phase-2.
In January 2021, the central government and the Central Water Commission (CWC) sanctioned eight hydropower projects of 144 MW on the Indus river and its tributaries in Ladakh. These projects will be developed in the districts of Leh and Kargil in compliance with the Indus Waters Treaty with Pakistan.
In June 2020, the government announced its plan to achieve 100% telecom connectivity in all parts of Ladakh. The project will be executed by the state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), using the Universal Service Obligation Fund (USOF). Also, in February 2020, Bharti Airtel rolled out its 4G and 2G networks in 26 villages and became the first operator to bring mobile broadband connectivity to these villages in the high terrain region.
In January 2020, a MoU was signed between NITI Aayog and UT administration of Ladakh to develop a strategic plan and provide support to specific projects, especially tourism, solar energy and others, which will be under the public-private partnership mode. Under this MoU, NITI Aayog will be supporting the UT’s administration through its key initiative ‘Development Support Services to States for Infrastructure Projects (D3S-i)’.
In Ladakh, ~33% of the total land is cultivated under agricultural activities with production of ~100,000 quintal per annum of food grains, which include key crops such as wheat, barley and rice produced across the Indus, Zanskar and Shyok river basins.
In Ladakh, tourism is one of the key areas that plays a vital role in generating revenue, jobs and overall growth of regions. Overall tourist arrival in the Union Territory (UT) of Ladakh in 2019 stood at 279,937. Until June 2020, total tourist arrivals in Ladakh were 6,079, of which 5,019 were domestic and 1,060 were foreign tourists.
In November 2020, Ladakh rolled out its first tourism incentive policy with focus on ensuring equitable and sustainable development of all regions in the union territory.
In October 2020, National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) and UT Administration of Ladakh signed an MoU to conduct a benchmark survey with a view to promote dairying and rural livelihoods in Ladakh.
On April 20, 2020, the Ministry of Tourism conducted its 5th webinar on the rich heritage of Ladakh titled ‘Ladakh: Explore the Unexplored’ under ‘DekhoApnaDesh’ webinar series.
Ladakh produces ~50% surplus production of milk, which has a potential to process/export and generate revenue for the local producers.