NTPC may sign for additional KG-D6 gas

State-run power producer NTPC is likely to sign contracts next week to buy an additional 1.51 million cubic meters a day of gas from Reliance Industries at government-approved price of $4.2 per mmBtu.

The additional gas would be used at NTPC’s Anta and Auriya plants in Rajasthan, Dadri unit in Uttar Pradesh and Faridabad plant in Haryana, official sources said.

Since these plants have already signed Gas Sales and Purchase Agreements (GSPA) for volumes totaling 1.81 mmcmd, only side-letters need to be signed for additional gas.

Sources said side-letters may be signed next week.

This follows Power Ministry’s ultimatum to NTPC to sign contracts immediately. While the government had allocated 4.46 mmcmd of gas from RIL’s eastern offshore KG-D6 field, NTPC has so far signed only for 1.81 mmcmd.

At a recent review of gas withdrawal from RIL’s eastern offshore KG-D6 fields, it was informed that the government had allocated 31.1 mmcmd gas to power sector on firm basis and an additional 12 mmscd on fall back or temporary bais. Against this, only 30.11 mmcmd was been drawn by the power utilities.

It was stated at the meeting that if the power utilities continue to draw less quantity of gas than what has been allocated, there is a possibility that the unutilised gas is allocated to other sectors, they said.

Of the 4.46 mmcmd allocated to NTPC, 2.65 mmcmd was for its Kawas and Gandhar power plants in Gujarat. But the state- owned firm did not want to use KG-D6 gas at these plants since it was in litigation with the Mukesh Ambani firm over fuel supplies to expansion projects planned at these sites.

So, an Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) last year decided that the state gas utility GAIL India will swap KG-D6 gas with fuel from other fields. Under this scheme, gas from western offshore Panna/Mukta and Tapti (PMT) fields that was currently supplied to NTPC’s northern India plants, was to be diverted to Kawas and Gandhar. The deficit at the northern India plants was then to be made up by KG-D6 gas.

But since PMT gas supplies to NTPC’s northern plants was only 1.51 mmcmd, a swap of only that volume has been affected.

Sources said GAIL has decided that 1.51 mmcmd of PMT gas that is currently being supplied to NTPC’s northern power plants would be diverted to Kawas and Gandhar. The northern plants will then be supplied KG-D6 gas.

NTPC currently buys 0.79 mmcmd of KG-D6 gas at its Anta, 0.54 mmcmd at Dadri, 0.26 mmcmd at Auriya and 0.22 mmcmd at its Faridabad unit.

With the swap, supplies would go up to 3.31 mmcmd.

RIL currently produces 63-64 mmcmd of gas against a potential of 80 mmcmd as government nominated customers like NTPC are yet to offtake their full allocated quantity.



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