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Page added on November 30, 2006

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India worried by gas shortage

India is desperately looking for long-term gas supply contracts with gas-rich nations in Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East to meet the acute fuel shortage that has hit its power plants, which operate at half their capacity.

‘The government should strive for securing long-term gas supply contracts at appropriate prices to make our power plants run their full strength,’ said Kirit Parikh, a key member of the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh`s energy coordination committee.
India`s power sector continues to be hit by the shortages with some 12,000 megawatts of gas power plants running at only half their capacity. The gas has hampered the supply of power to consumers.

More than 30 percent of government-controlled National Thermal Power Corp. `s gas-based plants are stranded either because of non-availability of gas or due to the high price of fuel. The gas shortage has become a severe problem not only for NTPC, but also for some of the states where projects with more than 1,000 MW capacities have been commissioned, but do not have the required gas supplies to ensure they run at full capacity.

Because of this, the government is exploring the possibility of increasing the import of coal, which may be a cheaper option to gas.

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