Power equipment: supply chain constraints persist

New Delhi,

The private sector is once again powering the generation capacity addition effort this fiscal.

After a stellar performance in 2009-10, private project developers account for nearly 50 per cent of the 4,935 MW capacity commissioned in the first six months of the current year.

The private sector, during the April-September period, added 2,290 MW as against just 1,235 MW added by Central utilities such as NTPC Ltd and NHPC Ltd, and 1,410 MW added cumulatively by State-sector generating firms.

In terms of the overall generation capacity addition target of 21,441 MW set for the current fiscal, the Central sector is expected to add around 37 per cent of this, the State sector around 32 per cent, while the private sector has been apportioned with the least responsibility, with the smallest share of 31 per cent in the projections made for the fiscal.

Midway through the fiscal, against the target of over 21,000 MW, a record capacity addition of around 13-14,000 MW looks likely this fiscal, boosted largely by a spirited performance by the private sector. Hitherto, the record for power capacity addition in a single year was in fiscal 2009-10, when 9,585 MW was added, mainly on account of a good showing by private developers.

Progressive improvement

“The private sector’s contribution to capacity addition has shown a progressively improving trend during the first three years of the current Plan period, despite most of these projects not having firm power purchase agreements, difficulties in getting site clearances, problems in open access, lower preference in allocation of fuel linkages, and impediments such as the need to furnish bank guarantees for getting transmission corridors built,” an official with the Central Electricity Authority said.

The units that have already been commissioned by the private sector during the current fiscal include Udupi Power Corporation Ltd’s 600-MW first unit, a 300-MW unit of Rosa thermal power project and KSK Energy’s 135-MW Wardha Warora unit.

The overall capacity addition achievement during 2009-10 was about 66 per cent of the target (9,585 MW against a target of 14,507 MW). It was 31 per cent in 2008-09 (3,454 MW against a target of 11,061 MW) and 57 per cent in 2007-08 (9,263 MW against a target of 16,335 MW).

According to Government data, of the 9,263 MW commissioned in 2007-08, the private sector accounted for only about eight per cent. This improved to 25 per cent in 2008-09 (883 MW out of the 3,454 MW commissioned that year) and to 45 per cent during 2009-10.

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SUMIT KUMAR

Executive at India Electron Exchange

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