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Energising India with hydro power

Interview SK Garg

india Updated: Jan 04, 2010 01:01 IST
Gaurav Choudhury

What are the most significant recent achievements of NHPC?
As per the NHPC’s unaudited results for the half year ended September 30, 2009, the company recorded the highest ever net profit after tax of Rs 1,119 crore. A joint venture company, National Power Exchange Ltd, has been formed by NHPC, NTPC, PFC and TCS to set up and operate power exchange at the national level.

What is the current installed capacity of NHPC? What are its capacity addition plans?
NHPC is presently operating 13 hydro power stations with a total installed capacity of 5175 MW which includes 1000 MW Indira Sagar and 520 MW Omkareshwar Power Stations through NHDC Limited — a joint venture of NHPC with Madhya Pradesh government. NHPC is focused on expeditious development of vast untapped hydro potential available in the country. We are presently executing 11 projects with an aggregate capacity of 4622 MW. The company had set a target to commission 12 projects with aggregate installed capacity of 5322 MW during XI plan (2007-12).

What steps are you taking to meet these targets?
NHPC has established a multi-tier progress monitoring and review system coordinated by the corporate project-monitoring group. The company has also introduced Primavera based monitoring system and earned value techniques of project management. Detailed and extensive reviews are carried out regularly at the project level, which is also periodically reviewed by the concerned Regional office. Co-ordination meetings with the participation of Regional and Departmental heads at corporate office are held to deliberate on critical issues with a view to expedite the project implementation.

What are the present major overseas consulting assignments with NHPC?
The expertise available with NHPC is being utilised in the countries like Bhutan, Myanmar and Tajikistan etc. The Company plans to continue expanding its international operations and further exploit the hydropower potential available internationally by leveraging its existing relationships developed through past consultancy assignments. The ministry of power has worked out an ‘Action Plan’ for hydropower development of 10,000 MW in Bhutan by the year 2020. The company has also signed an MoU with Myanmar to study the master plan for hydropower development of Chindwin River Basin.

Does NHPC have plans to diversify into other forms of energy generation?
NHPC’s core business is development of hydro potential available in the country and generation of power. We are committed to maintain a leading position in the hydro-sector and simultaneously expand our area of operation. Amending its object clause to include generation of power through conventional and non-conventional sources has widened NHPC’s mandate. However, thermal power projects are mandated for development through its subsidiary company NHDC where NHPC is holds 51 per cent equity and Govt. of Madhya Pradesh holds 49 per cent. NHDC has recently been entrusted with setting up of a 1320 MW thermal power project by the Madhya Pradesh government.

What are the plans of NHPC to meet the capital requirement for the future projects?
The capex plan of the company for the year 2009-10 stands at Rs 4,008 crore. NHPC has planned a capex of Rs 21,600 crore for the XIth plan to be met through internal resources, subordinate debt from the Government of India, proceeds from IPO, borrowings, etc.