Government’s ‘Open Hydel Policy’ to Revolutionize Power Sector, Boosting Economic Viability, Simplify Clearances and Streamline Power Project Setup Process: CM Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu

State Government to Provide Full Support to Independent Power Producers (IPPs) in Overcoming Obstacles: CM Sukhu assures

Shimla: In a significant move aimed at bolstering the power sector, Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu announced the government’s plan to introduce an ‘Open Hydel Policy’. During a meeting with the Association of Independent Power Producers (IPPs), the Chief Minister assured complete support to make their projects economically viable by assisting in the removal of obstacles and facilitating necessary clearances. This policy will streamline the establishment of power projects and provide a conducive environment for power producers.

The Chief Minister emphasized the crucial role played by the hydel sector in generating revenue for the state exchequer, stating that it was one of the main resources of income alongside tourism. In order to strengthen the economy further, the State Government has already enacted the Water Cess Act. To implement the Act, the Chief Minister sought a self-proposal from the IPPs on the quantum of water cess, assuring that the government would sympathetically consider their proposal.

Addressing the demands of the IPPs, the Chief Minister directed the Himachal Pradesh Power Transmission Corporation Limited (HPPTCL) to expedite the laying of power transmission lines. This measure will ensure the timely evacuation of power supply from generation sites, minimizing financial losses for the power producers.

To further support the IPPs, the Chief Minister stated that the State Government would consider their demand for calculating power tariffs from the date of commercial operation rather than from the date of the Power Purchase Agreement for 41 power projects. Additionally, an advisory will be issued to the Himachal Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission to consider royalty on an actual basis, with rates set at 12, 18, and 30 percent.

Highlighting the potential of the state’s power sector, the Chief Minister revealed that out of the total potential of 3539 MW through IPPs, only 754 MW has been harnessed so far. He urged the IPPs to complete their power projects within a defined timeframe to reap the benefits of these projects at the earliest.

The introduction of the ‘Open Hydel Policy’ is expected to attract more investment and participation from private power producers, leading to increased power generation and revenue generation for the state. The policy will provide a favourable framework for setting up power projects, including simplified clearances and support in overcoming hurdles faced by power producers.