Pooling of gas for power plants: GSPC also wants to be the "Pool Operator"
With the Ministry of Power (MoP) contemplating the pooling of domestic gas with R-LNG for improvement of capacity utilisation of stranded gas-based capacity, Gujarat state Petroleum Corporation Ltd (GSPCL) -- which has taken rapid strides in last few years in sourcing LNG from international markets -- has requested the Petroleum Minister that it be also made the "Pool Operator" along with GAIL as proposed at present. GSPCL, which produces domestic gas as well as imports LNG efficiently, has argued that it should be given an equal opportunity to act as a 'Pool Operator', thereby ensuring that pooling is done in a competitive manner. As per the company, having more than one 'Pool Operator' would not only avoid monopoly by creating a level playing field but also promote efficiency in gas pooling. Further, having multiple players would ensure competitive LNG sourcing, thereby bringing the required transparency in LNG sourcing. The company has made the following arguments in this regard to bolster it case:
GSPC is successfully playing the role of a 'Demand Aggregator 'since 2004, catering to the gas requirements across customers in industrial, commercial, transport, SME and domestic segments, marketing over 9 MSMCMD of natural gas in the State of Gujarat. With regards to gas sourcing arrangements, GSPC has effectively managed to import LNG from international markets, apart from supplying gas from domestic fields. In fact, till date, GSPC has sourced 47 LNG cargoes from international markets and got the same regassified at Dahej and Hazira LNG receiving & regassification terminals.
Further, as regards future supplies, GSPC has signed an agreement for sourcing of 2.75 MTPA of LNG from international markets, along with requisite access to regassification capacity at existing LNG terminals. The said agreement would be the next long term contract, LNG supplies under which would commence from 2015, would be received at Dahej terminal and natural gas would be supplied through all major pipelines in the country. Notably, rcently GSPCL had commenced commercial production of gas from its Deen Dayal West (DDW) field in KG Basin.
The gas transportation network of Gujarat State Petronet Ltd. (GSPL), a subsidiary company of GSPC, is spread across the State of Gujarat, inter alia its gas network of 2180 km, and has connected to all gas based power generation projects in the State having an installed capacity of 7945 MW, including Independent Power Producers (IPPs) having around 6595 MW. As per the company, such gas based power capacity of approx. 7945 MW put in place by Gujarat by making huge investments would benefit not only the State, but nation as a whole. In fact, as of today, Gujarat has the highest gas based installed power generation capacity in the country.
Further, the Ministry of Power has included only one gas based power plant located in Gujarat namely Gujarat State Electricity Corporation Ltd. (GSECL), Dhuvaran under the said proposal, while the gas based power projects promoted by GSPC Group, namely Gujarat State Energy Generation Ltd. (GSEG) and GSPC Pipavav Power Company Ltd.(GPPC), having installed capacity of 507 MW and 702 MW respectively have not been included.