MERC Approves RFS and PPA Document for 1350 MW Tender Floated by MSEDCL

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Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission(MERC) recently passed an order approving the RfS and PPA document floated by Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd. (MSEDCL) for 1350 MW tender under ‘Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vahini Yojana’.

MSEDCL’s main plea was: a) To accord approval for adoption of tariff for 283 MW of projects and signing of PPA with the successful bidder for 283 MW solar power as discovered through Competitive bidding conducted by MSEDCL. b) To accord approval to the RfS and PPA document floated for 1350 MW tender under MSKVY. The petition is filed under the provisions of Section 63 of The Electricity Act, 2003 (EA) for meeting the Solar Renewable Purchase Obligations (RPO).

For the above-mentioned project bids for 18 districts/circles were received with a total cumulative bidding capacity of 238 MW. As against 1350 MW bid, initially, 45 MW bid was received for 3 districts and after extending the bid deadline twice, another 238 MW bid has been received. 

At the e-hearing through video conference held on 14 May 2020, the representative of MSEDCL reiterated its submission in the Petition. Shri Vipul Joisher, representing 16 Respondents who submitted that they support the Petition filed by MSEDCL.

The Commission noted that “Earlier, MSEDCL had called for 1350 MW of cumulative Solar bids for various districts under ‘Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vahini Yojana’. However, as against 1350 MW bidded capacity, MSEDCL had received only one bid for 5 MW. On this development, in its Order dated 19 December 2019 in Case No. 323 of 2019, the Commission had noted that Ceiling Tariff fixed by MSEDCL at that time (Rs. 3.15/kWh) might have been one of the reasons for the lower response to the bids invited by MSEDCL.”

The Commission has allowed MSEDCL to reconsider the ceiling rate as per current market conditions for improving the response and success of the bids. Accordingly, MSEDCL revised the ceiling rate from Rs. 3.15 to Rs. 3.30 per unit to procure cumulative 1350 MW Solar Power under ‘Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vaahini Yojana’. Even after increasing such a ceiling rate limit for 1350 MW bid, MSEDCL has received bids for 283 MW only. Commission also feels that there could be location-specific issues in terms of cost variations and infrastructure development particularly for setting up the plants at 11 kV level. 

Since there are no deviations from the guidelines, the Commission is inclined to approve the RfS and PPA documents. 

Hence commission passed the final orders stating that “The Commission adopts the Tariff rate for 283 MW cumulative Solar projects on a long term basis (for the period of 25 years) under ‘Mukhyamantri Saur Krushi Vahini Yojana’ and Solar Power procured from these projects shall be eligible towards the fulfilment of Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co. Ltd.’s Solar RPO for the respective periods.”

Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission recently passed an order approving the tariff rate of Rs. 3.11/kWh for 100 MW Cumulative Capacity Grid Interactive Solar PV Power Projects on a long term basis for 25 years which is to be developed by Energy Efficiency Services Limited EESL.Along with the revised tariff rate commission also passed other orders regarding the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Power Sale Agreement (PSA).

The Maharashtra State Power Generation Company Ltd. and Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd jointly filed a petition for seeking approval for tariff rate of Rs 3.11/kwh for long term procurement of power for 100 MW AC cumulative capacity of solar PV power projects in Western and Northern regions of Maharashtra under “Mukhyamantri Saur Krushi Vahini Yojana”.

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