Solar power generators opting to participate in the reverse bidding route called by the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation can be assured of timely payments, officials from the utility said.
At a pre-bid meeting, in which a large number of potential bidders, including leading national and regional players participated, officials emphasised that the payment mechanism would be backed by LCs that power generators can evoke even if the payment is delayed by one day.
Among the various clarifications sought at the meeting, two major concerns were expressed by a number of bidders – protection against payment delay and the tight timeline for the bidding process and implementation.
Last month, the public sector utility tendered for procurement of 500 MW solar power from developers through the reverse bidding route with ₹5.10 a unit as upper limit. It needs the quantum of solar power to meet the solar Renewable Purchase Obligation for 2017-18.
Responding to concerns expressed by some of the representatives on delayed payments for electricity supplied from previous projects, the officials said the conditions of the proposed agreement, including creation of a revolving LC that will be renewed as and when it is evoked, ensure that payment will not be delayed. TANGEDCO is also in talks with a nationalised bank to get adequate limit, said the officials.
With a tight deadline facing TANGEDCO regarding the RPO, the timelines for the bid process have also been compressed.
Bidders were worried that there was just 10 months available irrespective of the size of the project. Normally, they get between 12 to 18 months depending on the size of projects.
The participants expressed concern and sought extension of time limit for financial closure and subsequent stages. However, the officials said the conditions of the tender cannot be changed at this stage.