Earlier, in view of the lockdown
owing to the Covid-19 crisis, the Centre had approved a relief package for the power sector that grants state-owned electricity distribution companies
(discoms) a three-month moratorium
to make payments for the electricity bought by them from the generating companies
(gencos). The payment security amount was also halved for upcoming power purchases.
Apart from these, late payment penalty has also been waived.
These measures could potentially stress the financial health of gencos. As a concentrated effort, CIL has decided to continue with coal supplies despite payment defaults. According to provisions of contracts signed between gencos and CIL, the power producers make monthly payment for the coal purchase in three installments.
A CIL official said that despite payment defaults, coal supplies to gencos are assured although dues from gencos stand at around Rs. 14,000 crore. CIL has also decided to extended the validity period for lifting of coal under all auctions without any penalty. Earlier, failure to lift the ordered quantity of coal within a stipulated time period attracted forfeiture of earnest money deposit under auction schemes.
“Now, this clause has been done away with till the closure of lock down period to non-regulated sector (non power sector) as well”, the CIL official said.
Coal stocks in the country now stand at 120 million tonnes (mt) with pitheads of CIL heaped high close to 75 mt. The rest 45 MTs of coal stock is at thermal power plants sufficient for 28 days consumption.
A CIL official said that currently there are no power plants in the country in critical or super critical situation for want of coal.
importing coal are being encouraged to substitute their requirement of imported coal with domestic coal of CIL by regular monthly allotments.