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Buyout strategy for NTPC capacity hike

(From left) Bengal power minister Manish Gupta, Kallol Datta, president of Bengal Chamber of Commerce & Industry, and NTPC chairman Arup Roy Choudhury in Calcutta on Friday. Picture by Kishor Roy Chowdhury

Calcutta, Aug. 29: Thermal power producer NTPC is planning a capacity expansion of 9,000 megawatt (MW) through acquisitions.

Chairman Arup Roy Choudhury said the company was eyeing projects that had achieved financial closure and had low debt. Coal linkage is another key factor.

“We have received 34 expressions of interest (EoIs) with a total generation capacity of 55,000MW. Due diligence is being done by a sub-committee,” Roy Choudhury said on the sidelines of an environment and energy conclave of the Bengal Chamber of Commerce and Industry. “Of these, we are looking at acquiring 8,000-9,000MW capacity.”

He said the recent Supreme Court ruling declaring coal block allocations between 1993 and 2010 as illegal might impact its acquisition plans. He, however, said the order was unlikely to affect its own mining operations.

NTPC had sought EoIs earlier this year from state power generation companies and independent producers for the acquisition of thermal plants.

Roy Choudhury said NTPC was seeking co-operation from the US to develop a geothermal project, which involved the utilisation of heat from rocks and fluids trapped in the earth to generate electricity. The project is likely to get a boost after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the US.

Roy Choudhury today met Bengal power minister Manish Gupta where formalities on the coal linkage on the proposed 1320MW power plant at Katwa were discussed. Coal would be sourced from Deocha Panchami block in Birbhum having a reserve of around 2,100 million tonnes.

 
 
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