Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Power: Nuclear power sector may be opened up for private participation

News from The Business Line

Changes to Atomic Energy Act awaits Cabinet nod, which if accepted and passed in the Parliament would result in private participation - both Indian and Foreign - in nuclear power generation, according to Mr. SK Jain, Chairman and Managing Director, Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL).

Even a 100% private participation in building nuclear power plants could be a reality says Mr. Jain.

However, even if such amendments to Atomic Energy Act are made, private investment in nuclear power plants may not be easy. Invariably organizations and individuals have shown serious resistance to nuclear power plants coming up in their vicinity. Currently NPCIL operates the following power stations:
  • Tarapur Atomic Power Station
  • Rajasthan Atomic Power Station
  • Madras Atomic Power Station
  • Narora Atomic Power Station
  • Kakrapar Atomic Power Station
  • Kaiga Atomic Power Station
The project at Kudankulam is probably almost completed and ready.

To my knowledge, there were (and are) opposition to plants constructed at Kalpakkam, Chennai (Madras); Kaiga and Kudankulam. Private investors will be worried about the cost of delays, since their capital gets locked up.

Unless NPCIL comes up with a better model, they won;t attract private participation in nuclear power plants in India.

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