NTPC pitches for upstream regulator

Written by Sanjay Jog | Mumbai | Updated: Feb 21 2009, 05:27am hrs
NTPC, which is engaged in a legal battle with Reliance Industries over K-G D6 gas sale purchase agreement, has made a strong plea with the petroleum ministry for a upstream regulator and to formulate a gas utilisation and pricing policy for various sectors, including power sector, so that adequate gas is available at reasonable prices.

Besides, NTPC had argued that the existing gas stations of NTPC get the priority allocation of future available gas and the pricing of gas is brought under the ambit of an independent regulator for determination/approval of gas price in a transparent manner. NTPCs gas/liquid fuel-based projects have a generation capacity of 3,955mw and they are situated in Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Harayana and Rajasthan. Due to constraints in the availability of gas, some of these units are running on naphtha and at times operating below capacity for want of fuel.

According to NTPC, the Centre would likely take its profit gas in kind and allocate the same to priority sectors. Moreover, NTPC has appealed to the power ministry to pursue for custom duty waiver of LNG and getting status of declared goods for natural gas and RLNG and naphtha so that a uniform rate CST at 4% is applicable.

NTPC sources told FE it has sought the power ministrys help in pursuing with the finance ministry for fixation of naphtha price on export parity basis.

Further, NTPC has appealed to the ministry to take up its plea with the finance ministry for exemption of excise duty/countervailing duty and custom duty on naphtha and pursue with the concerned state government for exemption of value added tax (VAT).

As far as availability of coal is concerned, NTPC is pursuing with the railways ministry issues to safeguard the consumers like power utilities to have control over cost of power generation by bringing back the class of coal freight preferably to 100 class and the rates of punitive charges for overloading of wagons to the original level.

Besides, NTPC has called upon the railways ministry for expeditiously establishing of rail link in the sections Tori-Shivpur-Banadag, Banadaa-Hazaribagh-Koderma-Tilaiya-Raigir to enable evacuation of coal from Pakari-Barwadih as well as Chatti-Bariatu and Kerandari coal mines blocks in time. NTPC is currently involved in the developing these coal blocks allotted by the coal ministry.