Odisha govt to extend financial guarantee support to GRIDCO

The Odisha government has decided to extend necessary financial guarantee support to GRIDCO (Grid Corporation of Odisha) as the demand for power had dipped during the lockdown period, an official said.
Odisha govt to extend financial guarantee support to GRIDCO
The decision in this regard was taken at a high-level review meeting chaired by Chief Secretary A K Tripathy on Tuesday where it was felt that Gridco needs support as power is a critical issue.
"Because of the shutdown and lockdowns, the power demand has reduced by 14 per cent during the period from March to June 2020 in comparison to the previous year," the official said, adding that the captive generation and consumption has also reduced by 25 per cent in April, 12 per cent in May and 2 per cent in June.
In view of the reduction in demand, the revenue gap of GRIDCO has widened, as it has to pay the fixed charges to power generating plants as per power purchase agreement.
"Based on the facts, the meeting resolved to extend necessary financial guarantee support to GRIDCO as power is a critical basic need," the official said.
Tripathy also directed the state-owned Gridco and OPTCL (Odisha Power Transmission Corporation Limited) and Distribution Companies (DISCOMs) to make the power sector self-sustaining through aggressive system reform and reduction in aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) loss.
GRIDCO CMD Saurabh Garg said that at present the outreach of power distribution has been extended to 89 lakh consumers in the current year against 16 lakh consumers in the year 2000.
He said that the percentage of AT&C loss has been reduced from 57 per cent to around 29.94 per cent during the period and the state has a power surplus of around 1000 MW per year.
The chief secretary asked the authorities to focus on reduction of AT&C loss, as reduction of 1 per cent AT&C loss leads to around Rs 130 crore of revenue gain.
Director Finance GRIDCO  Gagan Swain informed that the current power tariff of Odisha for agriculture, domestic industrial and commercial use is lower than many states like Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and others. Currently, power supply in Odisha is subsidized for domestic and agricultural use, he said.
Energy secretary N B Dhal informed the meeting that the framework for way ahead and said the installed power generation capacity of Odisha is around 7.15 GW including 2.13 GW from hydro, 4.36 GW from thermal and 0.66 GW from renewable sources.
Besides, various industrial houses have also installed captive plants with a capacity of around 9.85 GW, he said.
Tripathy also directed OPTCL and DISCOMs to improve quality and reliability of power supply by optimizing the use of the existing network. He said the assurance of quality supply will prompt the industries to source power from GRIDCO than that of installing their capital intensive captive plants.
The chief secretary directed the department of Industry to motivate the industrial units to procure power from GRIDCO, said the officials.

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