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Editorial | August 2014

Best & Brightest

The Government is expected to come up with fire power in the form of a mega Rs 50,000 crore equity fund as it looks for 24x7 supply in villages. The initial corpus is expected to flow in from State-run banks and power sector FIs such as Rural Electrification Corporation and Power Finance Corporation. So what else is in the offing? During FY14, the Project Monitoring Group, headed by the Prime Minister, has solved issues related to projects worth more than Rs 3.5 lakh crore creating the ground for generation capacity.

Meanwhile, the beleaguered power sector will find some respite, if the measures announced are implemented properly. There are measures to strengthen the entire power value chain. The Rs 100 crore allocation for supercritical ultra modern thermal plants; Rs 500 crore for ultra modern solar projects; the 10-year tax holiday and the rationalisation of coal linkages will facilitate the struggling power producers and put stranded power plants on a recovery course. The Government´s promise to resolve the existing deadlocks in the coal sector and provide fuel to all projects coming up before March 2015 will be a massive thrust to get the failing sector back on course. In addition, deduction in basic customs duty from 10 per cent to 5 per cent on forged steel rings used in the manufacture of bearings of wind operated electricity generators will reduce the cost of setting up wind power projects while the ¨accelerated depreciation¨ benefit revival fires up the interest in the sector. Ultra mega solar projects, focus on washed & crushed coal, looking at ultra-modern supercritical technology based coal projects, were among the positive measures announced recently. The renewed interest in coal-based methane projects is encouraging, however, that needs to be followed up with a clear implementation policy in this direction. Nuclear power gets a thumbs up from the current government and an acceleration is expected as the aspiration to treble the capacity opens up opportunities. Now, the 6th Anniversary Issue of Power Today, ¨Power 20:20¨, in your hands, also has seen changes in some categories. The companies were adjudged on various key parameters like financials, generation, installed capacity, number of transmission lines, etc.

The position of public sector undertakings like NHPC (Hydro), NTPC (Thermal), PGCIL (Grid), PFC (Finance) and BHEL (Power equipment) were untouched as they have dominated their respective sectors, but there was immense competition in the private sector.

In FY13, Lanco Infratech, which was adjudged the highest growth power generation company in the hydro category, has been replaced by Gati Infrastructure. This time, Adani Power has replaced Tata Power in the highest growth power generation company in the thermal category. In fact, it was a double strike for Adani Power, as it has outnumbered Tata Power in the installed capacity category too.

The State transmission company that laid the most network during FY14, Getco, has been replaced by RVPNL, Rajasthan. In the private transmission category, Reliance Transmission has replaced Adani Power. In the distribution category, Torrent Power has displaced BSES Rajdhani. In the most innovative power company in conventional category, Tata Power has overpowered Adani Power, whereas Praj Industries was adjudged as most innovative power company in renewables. In terms of best selling power equipment, Alstom T&D remained on top during the year, whereas, in the renewables category, Gamesa India replaced Suzlon.

Looking at the shift in the categories, it clearly suggests that, those who made it to the Power 20:20 list were strategically, financially and fundamentally strong. These companies have strategised and have grabbed the right opportunities in the power sector. A case in point, Reliance Power, which was awaiting a breakthrough though it has hydroelectric power projects aggregating over 5,000 MW under development, will now emerge the largest private power company with 7,800 MW operating capacity by end of FY 2015 once it concludes the deal to buy Jaypee´s hydro assets.

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