The excess power generation in the country is an aberration because a chunk of the country is yet to get connected to electricity supply, the Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power and New and Renewable Energy, R K Singh, has said.

Speaking at Indian Power Stations conference, Singh said, “If you look at the entire power sector, the demand has been suppressed because not everyone is connected.”

“We have just started taking-off and are going to enter double-digit growth. What we see as excess capacity today may not turn out to be enough if we unlock that demand,” he added.

Spurt in power demand will lead to an increase in coal demand for which the country needs to be prepared.

Singh said, “The unlocking of demand will come but with some constraints. We don’t have shortage of coal but we need to put in place mechanisms to get coal from underground to over ground and then to the power stations.”

Singh also said that NTPC Ltd must aim to become the world’s largest power producer. “Globally, NTPC is currently ranked 12th in terms of power generation. But in my view, NTPC hasn’t reached its limit. Why can’t NTPC set up power plants in other nations and why can’t the company emerge as our multinational? Why can’t NTPC become world’s largest power generator,” he said.

Singh said that neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Nepal and Bangladesh were viable markets for export of power since the per unit cost of electricity was very high in those regions.

The government is exploring the idea of sending teams to these countries to assess the demand for export of power, he added.