Maharashtra approves Rs.3 bn loan to repair Dabhol plant

September 4th, 2008 - 10:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Sep 4 (ANS) The Maharashtra government Thursday approved a Rs.3 billion ($69.76 million) loan for carrying out repair works at the ailing Ratnagiri Gas and Power Project Ltd (RGPP).An official announcement Thursday evening said the loan would be given through Power Finance Corp (PFC), and would help the 2150-MW capacity RGPP to augment power generation from existing 640 MW by an additional 900 MW.

Among other things, the loan - for which the state government will provide guarantee - will be used to buy spares from the General Electric (GE).

An amount of Rs.100 million will be utilised to repair a steam turbine which will help restart dysfunctional gas turbines that could generate 1,300 MW of power. Repairs will also be carried in a 300-MW unit and a 600-MW unit, which had been rendered dysfunctional following a breakdown in the machinery.

A company official last week expressed the hope that after the repairs, RGPP, formerly known as Enron’s Dabhol Power Plant, could start producing over 2,000 MW by December-end.

The controversy-ridden Enron plant was taken over by the government through RGPP in 2005. RGPP was promoted by National Thermal Power Corp (NTPC), Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL), MSEB Holding Co Ltd and a consortium of four banks.

So far, an investment of over Rs.8 billion has been made into RGPP but the plant has yet to achieve its full capacity owing to frequent breakdowns in the crucial machinery and interruptions in fuel supplies. It uses liquefied natural gas (LNG) as primary fuel and naptha as the secondary fuel.

Maharashtra is presently experiencing shortage of around 5,000 MW power which has forced the government to implement load-shedding ranging from two to 12 hours daily in the state, except Mumbai.

RGPP is located in Anjanwel village in Ratnagiri district, around 300 km south of Mumbai.

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