PowerGrid Corporation of India is planning to bid for transmission packages in Brazil on engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) basis by December-end, as the company looks for opportunities abroad on account of poor thermal power generation activity within the country in the last couple of years. A senior company official said, “We plan to bid for some two-three packages out of 11 packages worth Rs 83,000 crore, or $14 billion, being tendered by the government of Brazil. We are waiting to formalise a local partner who will be registered in Brazil to undertake the execution work. The bids have to be submitted by December-end,” the official said. PowerGrid is already present outside India providing consultancy services in 21 countries, mainly in Africa. But it is the first time they are looking out of India for an EPC opportunity. The contract would involve transmission lines, towers and setting up substations, the official said. The company is open to similar opportunities in other countries, such as Myanmar and Sri Lanka and other Southeast Asian countries. “We are in discussion with some of them and evaluating our options,” the official added.
Transmission lines are required to evacuate electricity generated at power plants to the substations where the high voltage power is converted to low voltage power using stepped-down transformers, and then transmitted to distribution centres. The Central Electricity Authority, in the Draft National Electricity Plan issued in December, said no coal-based power capacity addition is required between 2017-22 considering capacity addition from gas, hydro and renewable energy projects. However, generation from green power sources — solar and wind — have also slowed down leading to a delay in completion of green corridors by seven to eight months, the official added.
In India, the real opportunity lies in setting up intra-state transmission networks as demand within states would grow in the coming years and most of the states do not have the infrastructure to take the power from the electricity highways, the official said.
Earlier in March, Brazil awarded 31 power transmission projects across 19 states.