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NTPC plans nuclear power generation

Source: PTI
Last updated on: September 23, 2005 18:35 IST
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State-run National Thermal Power Corporation on Friday said it would become a 66,000 mw company by 2017 and announced plans to enter nuclear generation as also diversify into coal mining, gas exploration and LNG terminals to become a globally competitive integrated energy utility.

"We have decided to increase our 11th plan target from 11,558 mw to 17,052 MW. We are identifying projects totalling 20,000 mw for the 12th plan and plan to become a 66,000 mw company by 2017," C P Jain, NTPC chairman and managing director told shareholders at the company's annual general meeting.

Addressing shareholders at the first AGM since NTPC's listing on the bourses last year, Jain said the company had decided to participate in the entire energy value chain of coal mining, gas ensure equity stakes in gas fields and LNG terminals to assure sustainable fuel supply in long run.

The company was also looking to enter the nuclear sector and planned to add 2,000 MW capacity from nuclear fuels during the 12th plan, Jain said. The foray into the critical sector would, however, depend on a host of factors such as costs, availability of fuel and necessary approvals, he added.

The public sector giant is the country's largest power utility. It has 20 coal and gas-fired plants at present with a total installed capacity of close of 24,000 MW and had earlier set the target to enhance total capacity to 56,000 MW by 2017.

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Jain said the company is going for coal mining to enhance fuel security. NTPC has been allotted one coal block and has also identified two 3,000 MW integrated power projects in Orissa and Chhattisgarh where it would draw coal from its own mines, he told reporters after the AGM.

Jain said as part of strategy on forward integration, the company was also planning to acquire parallel distribution licences in areas around their projects and secure consultancy assignments in distribution.

NTPC, the third largest company on the stock exchanges with a market cap of over Rs 85,000 crore (Rs 850 billion), also plans to increase power trading volume while promoting a National Power Exchange to facilitate power trading in the country.

Identifying assured availability of coal and gas as the key to company's success and achieve energy security, Jain said issues concerning fuel needed policy initiatives like priority allocation of coal blocks and profit gas share of the government to keep power tariffs at an affordable level.

As a short term measure, NTPC is importing four million tonnes of coal this fiscal to meet the shortage, he said.

Laying special thrust on hydro power projects, the NTPC chairman said the company planned to substantially increase the ratio of hydro projects. The company is implementing the 800 mw Koldam project in Himachal Pradesh and has also taken up three other projects with a total capacity of 1,282 mw.

Presenting the performance highlights of 2004-05, Jain said NTPC generated about 160 billion units of electricity. This was 27.08 per cent of the country's total generation.

Jain said the company would raise up to $300 million through a Euro Bond issue sometime in January-March 2006 for meeting capital expenditure requirements.

The company posted a 10 per cent rise in net profit during 2004-05 to Rs 5,807 crore (Rs 58.07 billion) on net sales of Rs 22,564.91 crore (Rs 225.64 billion). During the first quarter this fiscal, NTPC reported a 24 per cent jump in net profit to Rs 1,308 crore (Rs 13.08 billion) compared to 1,054.10 crore (Rs 10.54 billion) in the year-ago period.

Jain, however, said the entry into the nuclear sector will depend on a number of factors such as cost economics, fuel availability and necessary approval.

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