GST rate on coal, solar not to impact on tariffs: Piyush Goyal
GST rate on coal, solar not to impact on tariffs: Piyush Goyal
Union power minister Piyush Goyal lauded the Raje government in Rajasthan for ‘pulling’ out discoms from losses
20 May, 2017, 05:52
Besides, Goyal, who also holds the New and Renewable Energy and Mines portfolios, said the higher tax of 18 per cent levied on solar modules will not impact solar tariffs.
The prices of solar and wind energy have hit record low and the industry is now able to stand on its own feet without any support, he said.
"I am happy that the GST Council made a decision to keep coal in the 5 per cent tax slab".
Responding to a question on lower Subansiri Hydro Power project, the minister said that had the project completed in time, the tariff would have been Rs 1.86 per unit which now would be around Rs 5.5 per unit.
The new rates of solar power discovered in the auctions are even below the average rate of coal-based power produced by NTPC at Rs 3.20 per unit. "At these places where grids can not reach, we are planning to give off-grid solution for which (chief minister) Vasundhara Raje ji and central government had extensive discussion" added the minister.Appreciating work done under Raje government, Goyal took potshots on previous Congress government for mishandling power sector.
"Wind power prices are also nearly at grid parity despite only one bid (auction for 1GW)".
Goyal added that villages in the remote areas, especially near the borders, would receive off-grid electricity through solar power. "It will help bring down costs", he added. "As we have seen rates unfolding yesterday, we are little more encouraged that the GST will help bring one nation one tax and help the nation to reduce corruption and difficulties in operation and also bring simpler tax regime". The coal sector will be benefitted significantly, which will be a benefit straightaway to the consumers.
The GST Council concluded its two-day meeting in Srinagar on Friday after deciding on a four-slab tax rate for services along with the novel concept of input credit for goods used. About keeping UPS and inverters in higher tax bracket, he said, "UPS and Inverters are the thing of past. We don't need UPS/Inverters and Converters anymore".
Welcoming the 5% tax on coal, Association of Power Producers director general Ashok Khurana said: "This will help to reduce the retail price of power for consumers".
The minister also said that if the people of the country start to pay the electricity bills honestly and the Discoms are able to bring down the ATC losses to less than 15 per cent, the 24x7 power supply will be a reality and states would be rewarded accordingly.
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