Power producers, including NTPC, and Coal India Ltd. (CIL) continue to spat over the terms and conditions for signing fuel supply agreements (FSAs) despite several deadlines set by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
Out of the 69 power plants that are yet to ink FSAs with CIL, 29 belong to NTPC and its joint ventures. “There are 131 cases of power plants/units for signing FSAs by CIL and its subsidiaries. Out of these, FSAs for 62 cases have already been executed. Out of the 69 pending cases, 29 cases belong to NTPC and its joint ventures,’’ according to a status report filed by the Coal Ministry with the PMO.
The signing of FSAs has been a contentious issue between power producers and CIL. NTPC is of view that CIL should promise to give a minimum calorific value of coal. “They are giving us poor quality coal and we don’t want it,’’ NTPC Chairman and Managing Director Arup Roy Chaudhury had stated recently. NTPC power plants need a minimum 3,100 kilo calories of coal, but CIL, at times, supplied coal with an average heat generating capacity of about 2,100 kilocalories. NTPC has not inked the FSAs for the 4,500 MW of power generation capacity.
The power plants of NTPC and its joint ventures which have not signed the FSAs include Dadri, Korba, Farakka, Simhadri, Bhilai joint venture and Sipat. However, most of these power plants are drawing coal under the memorandum of understanding route. The Government had also issued a Presidential Directive to CIL to sign FSAs with the power producers assuring them of at least 80 per cent of the committed coal delivery. But that had also not helped resolve the issue. “While NTPC wants the Cabinet to take a call on the issue, the power and coal ministries are already negotiating how best to resolve the matter,’’ a senior Power Ministry official said.