Revival of Coal Sector
Ultra Mega Power Projects(UMPPs- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultra_Mega_Power_Projects) ,launched in 2006 has been facing critical issues like fuel availability,escalation in fuel prices,delay in clearances.During the time of signing of PPAs by these UMPPs, developers were unaware of the fact that the fuel prices could escalate by 10-15%.Power developers are seeking a revision of PPAs to allow pass through of coal costs.TATA power has taken the foremost step relating to imported coal price issue in front of CERC (http://cercind.gov.in/2012/rop/Record%20of%20Proceeding%20in%20159%20of%202012%20CGPL%20.pdf)
Projects Awarded till date..
As of now, PFC(Power Finance Corporation) being the nodal agency has awarded 4 UMPPs – Sasan UMPP in Madhya Pradesh( Reliance Power),Tilaiya UMPP in Jharkhand(R Power),Krishnapatnam UMPP in Andhra Pradesh and MUndra UMPP in Gujarat (TATA Power). Mundra and Krishnapatnam is based on Imported Coal from Indonesia whereas Sasan and Tilaiya have been allotted coal blocks.Tariffs were highly competitive striking an average figure of Rs 1.88/unit.
UMPPs awarded (http://saiindia.gov.in/english/home/Our_Products/Audit_report/Government_Wise/union_audit/recent_reports/union_performance/2012_2013/commercial/Report_No_6/Annexures.pdf)
1. Sasan Power Limited, Sasan UMPP, Madhya Pradesh – Rs 1.196/unit
2. Coastal Gujarat Power Limited, Mundra UMPP, Gujarat – Rs 2.264/unit
3. Coastal Andhra Power Ltd., Krishnapatnam UMPP, Andhra Pradesh – Rs 2.33/unit
4. Jharkhand Integrated Power Ltd., Tilaiya UMPP, Jharkhand – Rs 1.770/unit
Mundra UMPP was first to commence its operations with commissioning of 3 x 800 MW units in 2012 and last unit was synchronized in Jan 2013 which were quite ahead of their schedule. CGPL (Coastal Gujarat Power Ltd.) -TATA’s wholly owned subsidiary(SPV) has been incurring losses due to change in the regulatory framework in Indonesia’s coal regime(http://news.mitraismining.com/pages/IndonesianMiningRegulation.aspx)
In July 2012,TATA Power sought a tariff hike in lieu of change in coal prices as DISCOMs refused to revise the PPA terms.In its tariff petition of TATA,it has stated that hike in Indonesia coal prices will lead to rise in generation cost by Re 0.67- Re 0.70/Unit,thereby denting the cash flow statements of TATA Power.Inspite of this deadlock of tariff,TATA Power continue its operations of Mundra while R Power stalled work at the Krishnapatnam UMPP.R-Power held that the operations could start only after the revision of Standard Bidding Documents signed with DISCOMs.Delhi High Court has suspended the petition filed by R Power and thus they have plans to approach CERC.
On the other hand,Sasan UMPP has made the steady progress. The first 660 MW unit is expected to commission by 2012-13.In Jan 2013,465 kV switchyard was commissioned in order to provided initial start up power.R Power has plans to commission the remaining units with a time interval of 3-4 months.As far as Coal production is concerned from Moher and Mpher Almohri,its much ahead of the targeted time frame. R Power is also struggling with legal hurdles w.r.t ambiguity of coal usage.Company was asked to stop production in the aforesaid coal blocks in lieu of R Power’s linking the Coal Scam by CAG.
R Power’s third UMPP Tilaiya has faced many delays due to challenges in obtaining forest clearances and land acquisition. As of Nov 2013,Stage II forest clearance has been awarded thereby keeping the project in limbo.
Progress Report of UMPPs released by CEA can be found at : http://cea.nic.in/reports/articles/thermal/umpp.pdf
The Power Ministry has identified additional 12 sites to set up UMPPs in different states and these are:
UMPPs in Process:
1.Chhattisgarh Surguja Power Ltd., Chhattisgarh UMPP , District Surguja
2.Orissa Integrated Power Ltd., Orissa UMPP, District Sundargarh
3.Coastal Tamil Nadu Power Ltd., Cheyyur UMPP, Tamil Nadu , District Kanchipuram
4.Tatiya Andhra Mega Power Ltd., Andhra Pradesh 2nd UMPP, District Prakasam
5.Deoghar Mega Power Ltd, Jharkhand 2nd UMP, Disrtict Deoghar
6.Sakhigopal Integrated Power Co. Ltd., Orissa 1st Additional UMPP, District Bhadrak
7.Ghogarpalli Integrated Power Co. Ltd., Orissa 2nd Additional UMPP, District Kalahandi
8.Coastal Maharashtra Mega Power Ltd. Maharashtra UMPP, District Sindhudurg
9.Coastal Karnataka Power Ltd., Karnataka UMPP
11.2nd UMPP in Tamil Nadu
12.2nd UMPP in Gujarat
Progress on the bidding process of only 2 UMPPs (Sarguja-CHattisgarh and Bedabahal-Odisha) have stalled as the coal block areas have been classified as No- Go areas. by MoEF. Despite the elimination of problem of Go/No Go areas ,the bad omen of clearances still pending with Sarguja UMPP.Bedabahal UMPP re invited pre qualification bids as it has been awarded green signal as far as MoEF is concerned.
MoP has finalized a new set of SBDs for UMPPs but the approval is still awaited from EGoM.The ministry has proposed separate rounds for Coal linkage and Captive coal blocks. Moreover,the bidding of UMPP will be based on first year tariff rather than 25 year levellised tariff.(http://www.powermin.nic.in/whats_new/pdf/Guideline_for_determination_of_tariff_and_SBD_for_case_1.pdf)
Earlier, in Oct 2012 CERC had suggested revising UMPPs on BOO Model rather than DBFOT Model. Moreover,there was a proposal to supply 100% of the coal to the power plants fulfilling the shortage through coal import.
Thus in the light of various issues,the development if UMPPs have been questioned by power plant developers.There is a need to build flexibility within the PPA structure to deal with uncertainties in a manner that is quantifiable for the prospective investors.
References : PFC India,UMPP,Wikipedia,Powerline Magazine