Looking to maintain surplus power supply in all parts of the country in the coming year, especially during high-demand summer months, the union power ministry has called for bids to procure 4.5 gigawatt (Gw) from generating companies (gencos). The supply period would be five years and additional coal would be allocated to the gencos which qualify under the scheme.
“PFC Consulting Limited (A wholly-owned subsidiary of PFC Ltd) has been designated as the nodal agency by the power ministry. Under the scheme, PFC Consulting has invited bids for the supply of 4,500 Mw. Power supply will commence in April 2023. The Ministry of Coal has been requested to allocate about 27 million tonnes of coal per annum,” said a statement by the ministry of power.
The bidding is under the SHAKTI scheme launched by the Centre in 2017 to build coal linkages for optimal supply of power across the country. The current round is the first such under the section B(v) of SHAKTI Policy which states: “Power requirement of group of States can also be aggregated and procurement of such aggregated power can be made by an agency designated by Ministry of Power or authorised by such States on the basis of tariff-based bidding.”
The policy further underlines that coal linkages will be earmarked for the successful bidder of the tariff-based competitive bidding for long-term and medium-term supply of power.
The statement said, this scheme “is expected to help the states that are facing power shortage and also help generation plants to increase their capacities.” States that have surplus power availability or generation capacity are likely to participate in the bidding. The ministry said five entities have already shown interest to participate in the bidding process. These are: Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd, Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd, Madhya Pradesh Power Management Company Ltd, New Delhi Municipal Corporation and Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Ltd.
This year, during the high-demand summer months, several states had complained of low coal stocks which could lead to deficit power generation. Non-pithead (away from coal mines) gencos could also benefit from the scheme as they will receive additional coal supply if they qualify in the bidding.
The ministry of power last month had issued guidelines for procurement of power on a competitive basis for five years on Finance, Own and Operate (FOO) basis under B (v) of SHAKTI policy. The last date for the bid submission is 21st December 2022.