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CLP's expansion plan put on hold

April 21, 2008 12:11 IST

CLP Power India's plan to double its power plant capacity is facing a roadblock as it is not able to source sufficient gas. The expansion plan of Rs 3,500 crore (Rs 35 billion) at its power plant near Bharuch in Gujarat has been on hold for a year.

The company is weighing options to procure gas so that it can take its power capacity from 655 mega watts(mw) to 1050 mw.

"We require eight million cubic metres for overall expansion which is almost half the gas available at Panna-Mukta-Tapi. At present,  for the 655 mw, we are using three million cubic metres a day," said Rajiv Mishra, managing director of CLP Power India, which is a 100 per cent subsidiary of the Hong Kong-based CLP Group.

The company had received the required environment clearance from the Gujarat Pollution Control Board in 2007. Currently 60 per cent of the power plant's energy requirements are sourced from gas while 40 per cent is sourced from liquified natural gas.

Gas is procured from players like Gujarat State Petroleum Corproation and Cairn Energy while LNG is procured from Petronet and Shell.For additional gas requirements,the company is in talks with Reliance, ONGC and Essar.

Andrew Brandler, CEO of the company also admitted that getting natural gas was a 'great challenge' for the company. Speaking about the possibility of nuclear power, Brandler said, "India is still sensitive to the use of nuclear power for them."

The company has emerged as the lowest bidder for a power project in Haryana with a capacity of 1,250 mw. 

The company had quoted a bid of Rs 2.996 per unit.CLP India acquired Gujarat Paguthan Energy Corporation Private Ltd in 2003. The GPEC power plant is one of the largest independent power projects to have been established in India.

CLP is listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and operates a vertically integrated electricity supply business through CLP Power Hong Kong. CLP is investing in renewable energy projects in Asia Pacific, focusing on wind, small hydro and biomass, with an emphasis on India, China and Australia.

Maulik Pathak in Bharuch