Oil-to-telecom conglomerate Reliance Industries aims to be among the top 20 companies in the world and become a leading provider of clean energy as well as leverage artificial intelligence and blockchain, its Chairman Mukesh Ambani said.
Oil-to-telecom conglomerate Reliance Industries aims to be among the top 20 companies in the world and become a leading provider of clean energy as well as leverage artificial intelligence and blockchain, its Chairman Mukesh Ambani said. At a star-studded function organised late last evening at the Reliance Corporate Park to commemorate founder Dhirubhai Ambani’s birthday and celebrate the company’s 40 years in existence, he outlined the future of RIL. Ambani set five aims for the company and expected the young generation of RIL to make them a reality. “Can Reliance be amongst the top 20 companies in the world? Yes we can… and yes we will,” he said at the newly built arena that is bigger than Lord’s cricket stadium. With his three children — believed to be his heir apparents — in audience, he said in the coming decades, the world will transition from fossil fuels to clean, green and renewable energy resources. “Can Reliance become a leading provider of clean and affordable energy to India? Yes we can. And yes we will,” he said. He also wants Reliance to become a leading global producer of innovative new materials that will revolutionise manufacturing and improve the quality of life in general. As for Jio — the group’s fast-growing telecom venture — Ambani said it has the opportunity to reinvent almost all sectors of the economy such as entertainment, financial services, commerce, manufacturing, agriculture, education and healthcare. “Can Jio be the first company to transform an entire nation in each one of these sectors? Yes we can. And yes we will,” he said. His fifth aim is to help India become a global superpower.
“Reliance has an opportunity to be an even stronger partner to our nation. Can Reliance and Jio partner and empower all Indians, our fellow-citizens, small businesses and enterprises so that India can become a global super-power? Yes we can. And yes we will,” he said. Some 50,000 employees and their families attended the gala event which featured Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan hosting a KBC session with the Ambani children, Shahrukh Khan’s performance and Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt dancing to popular numbers. Another 2,00,000 employees and their families joined the celebrations live via video conferencing at more than 1,000 locations across the country including manufacturing sites, retail stores and Jio points, according to company officials. Mukesh Ambani started the speech by paying tribute to his father Dhirubhai Ambani and other leaders who have contributed to the growth of Reliance.
“Reliance is the creation of the vision of one individual – my father, and our founder Dhirubhai Ambani,” he said. He credited his father with all the progress that the company has made in the last 40 years. It is because of Dhirubhai, he said, that Reliance had grown from one employee to over 2,50,000; from a Rs 1,000 company to over Rs 6 lakh crore; from one city to 28,000 cities and towns, and over four lakh villages. Ambani also spoke about the lessons that he learnt from his father about courage, empathy and faith.
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Wind power tariff dropped to an all time low of Rs 2.43 per unit in an auction conducted by Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd (GUVNL) yesterday, boosting clean energy initiatives of the country. “In an auction for 500 MW wind power capacities, the lowest tariff was quoted at Rs 2.43 per unit by Sprng Energy and K P Energy,” GUVNL MD Pankaj Joshi told PTI. He further said Verdant Renewables, Betam Wind Energy and Powerica quoted tariff of Rs 2.44 per unit each while Renew Energy quoted a tariff of Rs 2.45. Joshi said when the bids were opened, the lowest tariff was Rs 2.51 which dropped to Rs 2.43 in reverse bidding conducted later. There were 18 bidders when bids were opened yesterday, but only 12 qualified for the reverse bidding held later the same day. This is the third low for the wind power tariff in 2017. Earlier this year, the tariff touched a new low of Rs 3.46 in first round of auction for one gigawatt by Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI). In October, the tariff fell again to Rs 2.64 in second round of auction for one gigawatt by SECI.
The fall in tariff will boost clean energy in view of India’s target of having 60 GW wind energy capacities by 2022. At present, India has an installed wind capacity of 32.7 GW. The government has planned to auction 10 GW each in 2018- 19 and 2019-20.
Even as the tariff competitiveness of wind energy has improved as against the conventional energy sources, its viability continues to be a challenge, says ICRA.
According to the rating agency, while the government’s wind power bidding programme provides visibility to support capacity additions over the next four years, the renegotiation or cancellation of power purchase agreements (PPAs) by few states will be a major challenge.
The ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) proposes to issue bids for 5,000 MW by March next year followed by 10,000 MW each in FY 2019 and FY 2020, so as to achieve the cumulative wind capacity target of 60,000 MW by FY2022.
The tariff discovered in the reverse auction under the second MNRE scheme conducted by SECI in October this year declined by 24 per cent to Rs 2.64 per unit as against Rs 3.46 per unit discovered in the first MNRE scheme.
While this significantly improves the tariff competitiveness of wind energy as against conventional energy sources, the viability of such tariffs remains a challenge, ICRA explained.
“This would depend upon the availability of long-tenure debt at cost competitive rates, capital cost, plant load factor (PLF) level and ability of the developer to identity locations with high generation potential,” ICRA Ratings sector head and Vice President Girishkumar Kadam said.
Apart from the credit quality of the state-owned discoms, weak compliance of renewable purchase obligation (RPO) target and transmission constraints in few regions, the renegotiation or cancellation of PPAs has emerged as a key challenge, he said.
“This is following the significant decline in wind energy tariffs discovered through the competitive bidding route,” Kadam added.
ICRA further said the advisory issued by the MNRE to the state utilities against such actions as well as the orders issued by some state governments in this regard, are favourable for the developers.
“However, many of the feed-in tariff-based PPAs with relatively high tariffs as against the average power purchase cost of the state-owned discoms in the wind energy sector may remain exposed to a risk of forced back-down or grid curtailment as observed in few states in the past,” ICRA said.
This is also in view of the fact that these PPAs do not have any deemed generation clause or termination payment clause, it noted
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