Meghalaya: MePDCL to borrow over Rs 1300 Cr from REC, PFC to clear outstanding dues


SHILLONG | AUG 14, 2020:

The Meghalaya Cabinet on Friday, August 14, approved the loan amount of Rs. 1345.72 crore to be taken from the Rural Electrification Corporation (REC) and the Power Finance Corporation (PFC) for clearing all the outstanding dues of the Meghalaya Power Development Corporation Limited (MePDCL).

Talking to reporters after the Cabinet meeting here today, Power Minister, James PK Sangma informed that the loan amount would help the MePDCL clear all the pending outstanding dues of the various central power generating stations and the transmission companies like the PGDCIL.

It may be mentioned that the MeECL has outstanding liabilities to the various public sector undertakings namely generation companies like NEEPCO, NTPC, OTPC, and transmission companies like the PGDCIL.

According to Sangma, the total outstanding dues up to May 2020 for NEEPCO is Rs. 651.95 crore inclusive of penalties like delayed payment surcharges.

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"The MePDCL would also be writing to the Ministry of Power and all these generation companies for waiver of 60 percent for delayed payment surcharges," Sangma, who is also the spokesperson of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) Government, said.

He further stated that if the proposed 60 percent waiver of the surcharges, as a onetime settlement, were to be omitted, then the total outstanding dues would be reduced to Rs. 1091.92 crore.

Meanwhile, he said that the revenue collection of the State discom (MeECL) has been adversely affected due to COVID-19.

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"Given this prevailing situation, there was a notification by the Government of India wherein it has announced that Atma Nirbhar Bharat Abhiyan scheme, to infuse liquidity to distress discoms in the form of loans backed by the State Government, would be given to clear the liabilities of the gencos and the transco by the State discoms," he said.

The Power Minister further stated that under this scheme, REC and PFC would extend long term transition loans to discoms on certain conditions.

Earlier, Sangma informed that the Cabinet had agreed to this proposal with certain conditions with a High Powered Committee (HPC) being formed to monitor the functioning of the MEPDCL on two major sectors — to bring down the Aggregate Technical and Commercial (AT&C) losses and to reduce the gap of ACS and Aggregate Revenue Requirement (ARR).

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The HPC, consisting of the Chief Secretary, senior-most secretaries of the Finance department, Planning and Power department, will also oversee the additional industry sale and exchange of power through which the MePDCL could earn additional revenue.

"The HPC would meet every month and would make recommendations to the Board of the MeECL towards achieving the targets. These conditions were set and the Cabinet has approved the loan," Power Minister added.