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JSPL to invest Rs 20,000 cr to augment power business

Naveen Jindal-led JSPL is looking to invest about Rs 20,000 crore in its power business to take the generation capacity to 8,600 MW in the next five years.

“Jindal Steel & Power Ltd (JSPL) has planned an additional capacity of 3300 MW in Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh with an investment of Rs 20,000 crore by 2020,” Group CEO and Managing Director Ravi Uppal told PTI in an interview.

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The company’s present capacity is 5,300 MW including 3400 MW of its arm Jindal Power.

After successful commissioning of Tamnar expansion project in Chhattisgarh in record time “where we have achieved UMPP scale and created sort of benchmark”, the company is enthused about its power projects, Uppal said.

“We have continued to look at renewing prospects, wherever it is. There are certain projects which are under evaluation. Basic idea is to actively expedite 2000 MW in Andhra Pradesh and 1300 MW in Jharkhand,” Uppal said.

The company last week has completed its 2,400-MW Tamnar expansion project in Chhattisgarh for about Rs 13,000 crore.

Asked how the company plans to secure raw material for the projects, Uppal said, “Fuel is the main issue. Once the fuel issue is resolved then this can move much faster.”

He said the company required an estimated 16.5 million tonnes (MT) of coal per annum to fuel both the projects and was actively evaluating options to secure supplies.

“If you take 3300 MW you need about 16.5 MT of coal. We are evaluating the options for imports or procuring the same from domestic sources. The one which is in Andhra Pradesh, that is on the coastline so we have to evaluate which makes more sense domestic coal or imported coal,” he said.

For the power plant in Godda in Jharkhand, the company is also evaluating the options available, he added.

Asked, how the company will fulfil its existing coal requirements for the present capacity that includes 3400 MW of Jindal Power, a subsidiary of JSPL, Uppal said, “We are trying to see how we can source it. We are looking at various options. Lot of it we are buying through auctions and importing. Part of it we also get through coal linkage.”

Earlier, he has said that the company is studying on the bidding of coal blocks for the next round of auctions.

The Coal Ministry had last month rejected the bids of JSPL and Balco for four blocks.

Jindal Power had emerged as successful bidder for Gare IV/2, Gare Palma IV/3 and Tara coal blocks, while Balco had successfully bid for Gare Palma IV/1 coal block.

The Nominated Authority, which re-examined the offers for these blocks found that there was no “conclusive proof” of collusion in bidding for mines involving JSPL. Later, JSPL moved Delhi High Court against Centre’s decision to cancel bids of coal blocks allocated to it.

On possible cartelisation by companies for grabbing mines, Uppal said the “matter is subjudice and it is not appropriate to make any comment.


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