Bull market emerges amidst rumors of Indian hydroelectric power bailout

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Shares in Indian utilities are surging after reports that the government will announce a US$2.4 billion package to help spur the country’s hydroelectric power sector.

The financing would, according to Indian market journal Business Insider, provide a 4% interest subvention to an unspecified number of delayed projects and economically strained developers. Together, these projects have a cumulative capacity of more than 11.6 GW.

Money for the funding would reportedly come from India’s National Clean Energy Fund or pools already dedicated toward stimulating growth in the country’s mountainous northeastern region. Financing would be administered via a to-be established national hydro fund.

The bailout caused shares of state-owned utility NHPC Ltd. to jump by 8%, reaching a 52-week high at $0.53 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while shares of state-owned SJVN Ltd. rose by more than 5% to close at $0.52.

India has a significant potential for hydropower growth, and is home to a number of major projects currently under development. Authorities recently reported that northern state Himachal Pradesh alone has about 24 GW of potential — of which 21.5 GW is under development.

Notable projects being developed within India include the 540-MW Kwar1,856-MW Sawalkot, 1,000-MW Pakal Dul and 1,200-MW Teesta 3, amongst many others.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for HydroWorld.com.

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