By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, September 9, 2020: In a major setback to Adani Power Ltd (APL), the Odisha government has decided to buy out the 49 percent equity stake held by US-based AES Corporation in Odisha Power Generation Corporation Ltd (OPGC) for Rs 1,000 crore.

The State Government which owns 51 per cent stake in OPFC, has the first right of refusal (RoFR), which it invoked at the end of last month in complete reversal of its privatization policy in power sector.

The OPGC operates 1,740 MW thermal power plant at Banharpalli in Jharsuguda district. The supercritical capacity of 1,320 MW is a recently commissioned modern plant with low carbon footprint. The plant has a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) valid for 25 years with the state owned off taker GRIDCO and sources fuel from a nearby captive mine. This plant is the mainstay for base load power supply and amongst the lowest-cost power generated in the state.

Adani Power in June had announced that it would acquire US-based The AES Corporation’s 49 per cent equity stake in OPGC for USD 135 million (around Rs 1,019 crore) subject to customary regulatory approvals including compliance with applicable requirements in relation to the Government of Odisha and the receipt of regulatory approvals such as Competition Commission of India (CCI) and Reserve Bank of India.

The CCI in July had approved Adani Power’s proposed purchase of 49 per cent stake in OPGC. However, the Naveen Patnaik government’s move to acquire the 49 per cent stake has derailed APL’s attempt to enter into the state’s power sector.

AES had acquired stake in OPGC from the State Government through an international competitive bidding (ICB) process in 1998.

The turnover of OPGC during 2018-19 was Rs 887.71 crore.

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