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Power demand grows at 7.4% YoY in June

Rising capacity utilisation was driven by extended summer season with increased demand and sufficient coal supply.

, ET Bureau|
Jul 18, 2019, 03.24 PM IST
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Agencies
Power
Transmission line addition continued to be sluggish with 659 circuit kilometres added in June 2019 (June 2018: 1,905 circuit kilometres) with 98% of addition coming from state sector.
Data compiled by India Ratings & Research suggest that in June 2019 power demand grew 7.4% YoY while supply increased 7.5% YoY, resulting in lower deficit of 0.4%.

This raised capacity utilisation of thermal power plants to 62.2% for the month (June 2018: 59.4%), following improvement in private and state sectors’ capacity utilisation by 660bp and 380bp, respectively.

Rising capacity utilisation was driven by extended summer season with increased demand and sufficient coal supply. Capacity utilisation of central sector generators , however, further declined to 66.9% in June 2019 (May 2019: 68.5%, April 2019: 74.6%).

Short-term power prices at Indian Energy Exchange (IEX) remained stable at Rs 3.32 per unit in June (May 2019: Rs 3.34 per unit) but declined 11.1% YoY due to lower demand in the short-term market.

Total power trade at IEX fell 15% YoY to 4,211 million units in June 2019. Fall in short-term demand was on account of improved supply from long-term contracts as the generation improved YoY across all sectors including thermal (8.7%), hydro (7.9%) and renewables (4.7%).

The thermal power generation sector, which remains the highest contributor to the overall generation basket (83%), witnessed an improvement in total generation to 112.8 billion units due to higher YoY availability of both domestic and imported coal.

Coal imports increased 28% YoY to 5.7 million tonnes in June 2019 and increased 41% to 18.4 million tonnes in 1QFY20.

Although coal inventory at thermal power stations rose 72.4% YoY to 26.6 million tonnes in June 2019, it declined from the peak of 31.6 million tonnes in April 2019 due to higher electricity generation owing to summer season and elections. Subsequently, while the number of thermal power plants with sub-critical level of coal decreased to five in June 2019 from 15 in June 2018, the number increased from zero in March 2019.

Coal inventory decreased from 18 days of consumption equivalent on 31 March 2019 to 15 days on 30 June 2019.

Transmission line addition continued to be sluggish with 659 circuit kilometres added in June 2019 (June 2018: 1,905 circuit kilometres) with 98% of addition coming from state sector.
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