Look beyond the borders of Tamil Nadu to sell power

Vol 4, PW 7 (10 May 00) Midstream & Downstream

Luckily Poornalingam's perceived opposition to IPPs does not extend to the promoters of a 2.5m tonnes a year LNG complex and captive 1,850-MW power plant at Ennore.

It does, however, impact on the quantity of electricity he is prepared to offtake. A spokesman for the Aditya Birla-led consortium, which includes CMS Energy, Unocal, Woodside and Siemens,confirms to Petrowatch that TNEB has made a "verbal commitment" to offtake between 750 and 800-MW of electricity generated at Ennore, leaving a balance of approximately 1,000-MW, which needs to find a buyer.

"Our project is now an inter-state project," a consortium member tells Petrowatch, "We are talking to the neighbouring states of Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh to sell the balance." Interestingly, all negotiations are carried out through the offices of the recently set up Power Trading Corporation (PTC), which is attached to the Ministry of Power in Delhi. Meetings between the consortium and the PTC are held at regular intervals.

The PTC's principle role is to buy electricity from power projects (in this case Ennore) and "on-sell" to State Electricity Boards (SEBs). At Ennore, the PTC is presently evaluating the tariffs submitted by the consortium and is calculating its "wheeling" and "overhead" charges.

Adds a source: "The wheeling charge to Karnataka is not the same as the wheeling charge to Kerala or for that matter to Andhra." It is not yet clear how much electricity will be shared between Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh or how much they will pay for it. These are issues to be discussed when the PTC next meets the consortium partners later this month.

Equity breakdown of the 'Dakshin Bharat Energy Consortium' behind the 2.5m t/y and 1,850-MW Ennore project Company Equity Interest Grasim Industries (Aditya Birla Group) 26.67% CMS Energy 26.67% Unocal 18.66% Woodside Petroleum 15% Siemens 13%