In a significant move, the Tirupur Export Knitwear Industrial Complex (TEKIC) here has finally got the approval from Tamil Nadu Electricity Board to ‘wheel the energy' generated by its wind mills for captive use within the TEKIC premises.

“It means that whatever the quantum of power supplied from our 500 KW X 8 wind mills functioning in Radhapuram village in Tirunelveli district to the TNEB grid can be set off against the power consumed by the 189 textile and ancillary firms functioning in our estate (i.e. TEKIC estate) in Tirupur and pay only for the remaining units at the regular rates fixed by TNEB,” TEKIC chief executive officer B.M. Boopathi told The Hindu.

Till now, the TEKIC had been selling the entire power produced from its mills at Radhapuram to the TNEB at the rate of Rs.2.75 per unit even while purchasing power for the textile units in the estate here at Rs.5.25 per unit for every unit consumed.

This approval will bring down the production costs for the units functioning on the TEKIC industrial estate premises here considerably since power costs occupy a sizeable chunk of the operational expenditure for the knitwear manufacturing units.

Mr. Boopathi said that the annual production of the TEKIC's eight wind mills together stood at 75 lakh units and monthly power consumption of the industrial units within the TEKIC campus was pegged at around 10 lakh units per month.

Even though the windmills at Radhapuram were set up by TEKIC in 2005, the approval for energy wheeling was obtained only two days ago owing to some technical problems that arose during the processing period.