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NTPC to list 3 subsidiaries as part of Rs 15,000-crore asset monetisation – Business Standard

NTPC Ltd., the state-owned thermal power company, will take three subsidiaries public in order to meet the government’s target of asset monetisation worth Rs 15,000 crore.

The three companies are NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam ltd (NVVN), North Eastern Electric Power Corporation ltd (NEEPCO) and the year-old NTPC-Renewable Energy Ltd (NREL). NTPC will exit NTPC-SAILPower Company, its joint venture with state-owned steel firm SAIL, as part of the monetisation plan.

Senior NTPC executives said NREL would be listed “before October next year.” NTPC incorporated a wholly-owned subsidiary for its renewable energy projects in October 2020.

Gurdeep Singh, chairman and managing director of NTPC, said in June NREL would be listed soon. “We should not focus on one way of raising funds. We want to soon go public for raising funds,” he said, adding that the company would add 7-8 GW renewable every year.

NTPC is looking to invest in solar and wind power as it takes up green hydrogen and green methanol, cleaner fuels that are manufactured at units powered by renewable energy. Sources said the company will start a pilot of producing green hydrogen at its Vindhaychal thermal power unit in Madhya Pradesh.

NTPC builds renewable projects under two heads: EPC (engineering, procurement, and construction) mode, in which it participates in tenders floated by the Centre and states and constructs on its own. It has constructed 1.2 Gw of solar and wind projects. The other is developer mode, where it awards renewable projects to private companies and procures power to sell to states. Under the developer mode, 4 Gw projects are operational and tenders for close to 3 Gw would be finalised soon.

The other subsidiary is NVVN which was established as the power trading arm of the company. However, over the years it has morphed itself into the environment arm for NTPC with projects in fly ash trading and usage, renewable energy projects, electric and hydrogen mobility and waste to energy. NVVN is also planning projects is procuring green, agro-based fuels to blend in thermal units. Recently, NVVN has floated tender to procure 20 million tonne of bio-pellets made from farm stubble.

Senior executives said NVVN is being redesigned to become the ‘energy transition’ company for NTPC and take up projects that can add to NTPC’s ESG (environment, social and governance) targets. “Post listing, NVVN would be standalone example of technology development for energy transition in the country,” said an executive.

NVVN traded over 18 BUs of power in FY 2020-21 which is the highest volume since its inception, said the annual report of NTPC. NVVN has started plying 40 e-buses in Port Blair and won tender for supplying and operating 90 nos. e-buses to Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC). It has installed 1000 EV charging stations in eight cities.

NVVN is under various stages of implementation of ground mounted/roof-top solar projects along with charging infrastructure development at various airports and public buildings, said the annual report. NVVN paid dividend of Rs 30 crore during FY 2020-21.

NTPC acquired 100 per cent stake in NEEPCO in March last year, earlier owned by the union government of India. NEEPCO operates 7 hydro, 3 thermal and 1 solar power stations with a combined installed capacity of 2,057 MW. During the last fiscal, NEEPCO commissioned its largest 600 MW Hydro Project Kameng, Arunachal Pradesh.

NTPC-SAIL Power Company is a 50:50 joint venture between the two CPSUs. It owns and operates captive power plants of SAIL at Durgapur, Rourkela and Bhilai and has a total installed capacity of 814 MW.

NITI Aayog, the central government’s think tank, in its recently published National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) has identified 6 GW worth of power generation assets for monetisation over FY 2022-25. This included 3.5 GW hydel assets and about 2.5 GW is renewable (solar and wind energy). The Centre expects to fetch around Rs 39,832 crore from power generation assets.

“Together, 6 GW asset base considered for monetisation constitute about 6% of total generation capacity under central PSUs. Key entities whose assets have been considered are NHPC, NTPC & SJVNL who own bulk of the hydel assets and NTPC (under Ministry of Power) and NLC (under Ministry of Coal) that own renewable assets,” NITI said in NMP.