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Interaction | January 2015

We have increased our capex by 58 per cent

K Biswal, Director (Finance), NTPC
Can you take us through some of your latest development during last year?
To begin with, we have approved an investment worth Rs 9,188 crore for Tanda Super Thermal Power Project, Stage-II (2x660 MW) in Uttar Pradesh. In addition, we also have approved Rs 1,381 crore investment for Rammam Hydro Electric Project, Stage-III (3x40 MW) in West Bengal. Main plant packages for the Tanda have been awarded -SG package to L&T MHI and TG package to Alstom BF. For Rammam Hydro, a package for civil hydro-mechanical has been awarded to Simplex-Apex JV. Meanwhile, NTPC has been allotted 1,200 acres of land at Pudimadaka by Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation Ltd for setting up a 4,000 MW coal based project in APSEZ. This project entails an investment of Rs 20,000 crore approximately. For Telangana Super Thermal Power Project feasibility report has been approved by Committee of Board.

With the government´s current focus on renewable energy, how is NTPC meeting the current requirements?
The renewable energy is certainly a sunshine sector. And that is why we are planning to have our presence in this sector in a big way. For e.g., we have signed an MoU with government of Andhra Pradesh to develop 1,000 MW solar power project(s) at suitable sites in a phased manner. The projects will be implemented on build, own and operate basis in Andhra Pradesh. NIT has been invited for 250 MW (5 Block of 50 MW each of solar projects) to be set up at Anantapur in Andhra Pradesh. Meanwhile, in October a Letter of Understanding was signed with the government of Madhya Pradesh for setting up 2 to 3 solar PV projects of not less than 250 MW each.

Can you outline your capacity addition and capex programme for FY15?
Our capacity addition target for FY 2014-15 will be 1,800 MW. As against the capex outlay target of Rs 22,400 crore in FY2014-15, till September 2014, we have incurred a capex of Rs 8,137 crore. The corresponding amount of the first half of FY2013-14 was Rs 5,164 crore, thus resulting in an increase of 58 per cent. The capex by other group companies has been Rs 1,767 crore in H1 FY2014-15. The group capex in H1 FY2014-15 was Rs 9,904 crore.

Meanwhile, Barh-II and Mauda projects are unable to generate to their potential as they are generating sub-optimally. Can you just elaborate on that and what NTPC plans to do?
As far as Barh is concerned it is not yet declared commercial, so it is in the phase between synchronisation and commercial declaration. We are checking all the systems, trials are going on and very shortly we will be declaring it commercial within a very reasonable period of time, but as far as Mauda is concerned, yes, it has stabilised this year. There is no schedule being given to this plant because of its location in the merit order rating, but as far as availability of the plant is concerned, we have no doubts that by the end of the year we will be able to recover the full fixed cost.

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