Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company (MSEDC) has failed to pay dues worth R2,300 crore to renewable energy companies hitting their viability, people familiar with the development told FE.
A spokesperson for MSEDC said some payments had been made in April. “However, we have R2,300 crore worth of payments pending as the financial health of the discom has deteriorated in the last one year on account of non payment of dues by customers,” the spokesperson told FE. Continuum Wind Energy, which has not received its dues since November 2015 was on the verge of default, Arvind Bansal, CEO and founder told FE. “The non- payment of dues by discoms created a near-default situation for us. But we were saved by our shareholders,” Bansal said. Renewable power producers such as Renew Power, ACME Solar, Hindustan Cleanenergy, Indo Rama and Panama Wind Energy, among many others, were not paid since April, the Maharashtra state discom spokesperson confirmed. The Power Finance Corporation’s report on the performance of state utilities noted that MSEDCL had accumulated losses worth R7,087 crore as of March 31, 2015.
Wind energy projects have been the worst affected among the lot of power producers where the payments have been delayed by over one year, said Parag Sharma, COO at Renew Power, which has around R400 crore worth of dues pending with MSEDC. “We have a presence in eight states and have hedged our revenues in such a way that not more than 20% comes from any one state. This helps us to meet our debt obligations on time,” Sharma added.
– Vikas Srivastava