Chennai: Union power minister Piyush Goyal will take a call on the 4,000 MW ultra mega power projects (UMPP) in Tamil Nadu and Odisha on Monday– on whether to accept the sole bid of public sector companies after private players withdrew their bids. Private firms which had participated in the first round of bidding for both the projects, withdrew their bids citing difficulty in securing finance for these projects.
As a result, while the state owned NTPC has emerged as the sole bidder for the Tamil Nadu project, NTPC and an NHPC-BHEL joint venture are in the fray for the Odisha UMPP. The country’s largest thermal power producer, the NTPC, has emerged as the sole bidder for the 4,000 MW Cheyyur project in Tamil Nadu. The proposed, imported coal-based plant will be constructed at a cost of Rs 25,000 crore. “If a public sector company is the only bidder, then it is awarded the project. But if a private firm is the sole bidder, the tender is scrapped,” according to sources.
Among the private players in the fray were Adani Power, CLP India, Jindal Steel & Power, JSW Energy, Sterlite Energy and Tata Power. The final price bids for a similar 4,000 MW project at Bedabahal in Odisha will be opened on January 7. Adani Power, CLP India, GMR Energy, Jindal Steel & Power, JSW Energy and Sterlite Energy were among the private companies, and PSUs NTPC and NHPC participated in the first round of bidding for the Odisha plant. The pithead project is likely to entail an investment of about Rs 24,000 crore.
The Association of Power Producers (APP), a body representing private firms, had written to the power ministry explaining the private companies’ inability in setting up the plants. The APP also said the DBFOT (design, build, finance, operate and transfer) model is not feasible for these UMPPs. UMPP is a coal-based power project of 4,000 MW generation capacity.