The National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) has warned that it will stop supply due to non-payment of dues by power distribution companies (DISCOMs) in Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Karnataka.
The three states together owe NTPC ₹58.38 billion in outstanding power bills (both conventional and solar). A total amount of ₹18.84 billion is due to be paid by these DISCOMs to NTPC for solar power supplied under the National Solar Mission (NSM).
This also brings to fore the suffering of renewable energy generators because of non-clearance of dues by DISCOMs. Financing renewable energy projects is not an easy task in India as banks and financial institutions are wary of lending to projects focused on intermittent sources of energy when projects based on coal are turning into non-performing assets (NPAs).
In case of NTPC, it can make the defaulters pay by virtue of its massive generation capacity, but for smaller players in the renewable energy sector it becomes a matter of survival as they are completely dependent on the whims of DISCOMs.
Recently Ministry of Power constituted a new committee to study and submit recommendations into the issue of delayed payments by DISCOMs to power generating companies and independent power producers. The sooner the final results are published, the better it will be for renewable energy sector.
Reference- Mercom India, Economic Times