Private gencos seek more time to pay transmission charges

Pratim Ranjan Bose Kolkata. April 2 | Updated on April 02, 2020 Published on April 02, 2020

In view of the looming payment crisis, private sector electricity generation companies have approached the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) for a 90-day extension for payment of all transmission charges.

A chunk of such charges are to be paid to the central transmission utility, Power Grid Corporation.

Private sector electricity generators were suffering from huge unrealised bills from State government-run distribution utilities, when COVID-19 struck.

Following the lockdown, the issue has been aggravated by the complete stoppage of disbursement against fresh purchases and unilateral suspension of contracts by at least six Dicoms, including Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Telengana and Dadra Nagar Haveli (Union Territory).

In an appeal to the Union Power Ministry, on March 20, just before the government decided to impose the lockdown to prevent the spread of Covid-19; the gencos placed three sets of recommendation to minimise the impact on the value chain.

The recommendations were forbearance of the installment payment to banks and financial institutions; creation of a liquidity window for Discoms to be backed by State government guarantee, and deferred payment to Coal India (CIL) and Indian Railways.

Of March 27, the RBI allowed banks to grant moratorium on interest payments. However, there is no decision yet on coal and rail charges to private gencos. CIL is giving fuel on credit to State and Central government gencos.

To tide over the cash drought, private gencos are now knocking the doors of CERC to allow deferred payment of transmission charges.

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Published on April 02, 2020
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