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Govt puts 22 stalled power projects on watch list

Major power generation projects across the country have been identified by the government to address their woes ranging from fuel to debt to off-take of power.
Twenty two projects promoted by GVK, Lanco, Essar, Tata Power and GMR among others came up for discussions during a series of meetings chaired by Minister of state for power Piyush Goyal and steered by department of financial services (DFS), ministry of finance this week.
Private project developers made presentations on the projects selected by the government to discuss the hurdles faced by them in execution, said an official. Of the 22, 17 are coal based, three are gas-based and two hydro projects. The criteria of selection were not disclosed but priority was given to those facing fuel supply crunch and have mounting debt.
The meeting was attended secretaries of DFS, coal, power, renewable energy, petroleum and natural gas. Also, present were officials from the prime minister’s office, Power GridCorporation of India Limited (PGCIL), Central Electricity Authority, Power Systems Operation Company (POSOCO), and Planning Commission. Representatives from the State Bank of India, Rural Electrification Corporation and other financing agencies were also present.
Making separate presentation each, some 18 projects complained about fuel supply while 15 projects said they are grappling with banking issues. With power demand subdued, 12 projects mentioned off-take as a concern and the same number of projects are facing cost overrun. Around seven projects made presentation on their cases stuck at regulatory commissions and 10 had issues with the state government functioning.
At the end of the meeting, officials said, the government would look for resolving all the issues faced by the power developers. As the sick status of the power distribution companies is hurting the whole power supply chain, the officials agreed on a separate approach on the same.The ones facing coal supply shortage, for them, the idea was shared that there would be separate coal block or linkage auction. The minister also assured that all the banking related issues would be taken up with the concerned authorities.


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