Taking stock of a spurt in international coal prices due to new regulations in Indonesia,the Power Ministry may tweak the bidding documents for upcoming ultra mega power projects to cater to the possibility of future increases in raw material rates.
The Power Ministry has discussed such a proposal with the Coal Ministry and Law Ministry and is awaiting their response.
“The Power Ministry has sought response over amendments in the bidding documents of the UMPP from the law and coal ministries… It would accommodate changes in international coal prices,” a Power Ministry official said.
The current bid document for UMPPs does not have any such provision,he said.
Tata Power,which is executing the 4,000-MW ultra mega power project at Mundra,in Gujarat,and Reliance Power,which is developing the Krishnapatnam UMPP in Andhra Pradesh,had requested the Power Ministry to allow them to increase the tariffs of these projects due to a rise in international coal prices.
Both these projects are imported coal-based projects.
However,the Power Ministry is believed to have advised the respective developers to sort out the issue bilaterally with procurers of power from these projects.
From September 23 last month,Indonesia made it mandatory for coal exports to be benchmarked to international market prices. Earlier,companies such as Tata Power would negotiate coal supplies from the island nation,which was a cheaper proposition than paying the international rates.
Power Finance Corporation,the nodal agency for UMPPs in the country,has allotted four such projects to developers.
Reliance Power is developing the Sasan (Madhya Pradesh),Krishnapatnam (Andhra Pradesh) and Tilaiya (Jharkhand) UMPPs,while Tata Power is engaged in execution of the Mundra UMPP,the first 800-MW unit of which is likely to be commissioned by January next year.
Initial bids for the 4,000-MW Bedabahal UMPP in Orissa were invited by PFC in June this year. As many as 20 companies participated in the tender,out of which all are believed to have qualified for the second round of bidding,which is likely to take place next month.
Coal blocks for the Sarguja UMPP in Chhattisgarh are still awaiting environmental clearance.