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Govt okays Rs 31,560 cr power project investment proposals

CCEA approves recommendations of GoM on stressed power assets

Govt okays Rs 31,560 cr power project investment proposals

New Delhi: The government on Thursday cleared investment proposals worth over Rs 31,560 crore in power projects, including two coal-based thermal plants and a hydro project on river Chenab in Jammu and Kashmir. The thermal power plants in Buxar, Bihar, and Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh, are expected to become operational by 2023-24. Briefing media after the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said approval has been given to an investment of Rs 10,439.09 crore for the 2x660 MW Buxar Thermal Power Project (Buxar TPP) in Bihar. The Buxar project will be implemented by SJVN Thermal Private Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of SJVN, a mini-ratna CPSU.

"The project is expected to generate substantial direct and indirect employment apart from various other socio-economic development in the project area. The Buxar TPP will start yielding benefits from 2023-24," said an official release. The CCEA, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, also gave nod to the investment proposal for a 2x660 MW Khurja Super Thermal Power Plant (STPP) in Bulandshahr at an estimated cost of Rs 11,089.42 crore and Amelia Coal Mine in the Singrauli district of Madhya Pradesh.

The Khurja STPP, too, will start yielding benefits from 2023-24, the government said. Jaitley also said the CCEA gave approval to the investment for acquisition of Lanco Teesta Hydro Power Ltd (LTHPL) and the execution of balance work of the Teesta Stage-VI Hydro Electric Project by NHPC in Sikkim.

This will be implemented at an estimated cost of Rs 5,748.04 crore (at July 2018 price level), which includes a bid amount of Rs 907 crore for the acquisition of LTHPL and an estimated cost of balance work of Rs 3,863.95 crore that includes Interest During Construction (IDC) and Foreign Component (FC) of Rs 977.09 crore. The project would generate 2,400 million units in a 90 per cent dependable year with installed capacity of 500 MW (4x125 MW). The finance minister further said the CCEA has approved the investment for the construction of Kiru Hydro Electric Project (624 MW) by Chenab Valley Power Projects Pvt Ltd (CVPPPL) in Jammu and Kashmir. The project will be implemented at an estimated cost of Rs 4,287.59 crore which includes IDC and FC of Rs 426.16 crore and an infusion of equity of Rs 630.28 crore by NHPC in CVPPPL.

The government also approved recommendations of a group of ministers (GoM) on stressed power projects which include grant of coal linkage for short-term PPAs and increase in quantity of coal for special forward e-auction for power sector. Various stressed power projects that could benefit from the decision are of Adani, GVK, GMR, Jaypee and Essar groups. These assets were listed as non-performing assets or bad loans in a Standing Committee on Energy report. According to the report of a High Level Empowered Committee (HLEC) headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha, 34 projects with total capacity of 40.13 GW were identified as stressed assets which were facing issues related to coal, slow power demand, delay in payments by discoms and slow development by developers.

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