Union Minister wants NTPC to bid for 4,000 MW Tilaya project

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Hyderabad, Nov 14 (UNI) The Centre is keen on providing a level playing field for public sector power companies, Union Minister of State for Power Jairam Ramesh said today.

Both the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited were in a ''disadvantageous position now'' when compared to private players, he noted while talking to reporters here.

Stating that he had asked the NTPC to bid for the ultra mega 4,000 MW Tilaya Power project, he said even Andhra Pradesh Generation Corporation (APGENCO), which had been allotted coal blocks in Orissa, could go for a ''200 MW Pitted power station.'' The Central public sector undertakings continued to run a maximum of 47 per cent of the power plants, while State public sector undertakings accounted for 34 per cent of power generation and the private sector the rest, he added.

Replying to a question, he admitted that''uncertain financial market conditions are posing a serious problem for some companies to achieve financial closure for UMPPs.'' The Reliance Power company officials, however, were confident of achieving financial closure for the Sasan Power project.

The country's first ultra mega power project of Tata Motors Limited with five units of 500 MW each in Gujarat would be commissioned in 2011, he said, adding the UMPPs were in the offing in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka also.

To a question, he said the Centre had no proposal to amend the Electricity Act to empower the Regulatory authorities to review the Power Purchase Agreements entered into by various States with Independent Power Producers.

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