This is what coal firms need to do, Sriprakash Jaiswal, Union Minister of Coal, said at the Bloomberg UTV Power Summit 2011 in Delhi.Bloomberg UTV business channel kicked off 'The Power Summit 2011' a three-day summit on 'Future power, future strategies - A new paradigm' at Taj Mansingh in New Delhi. Chief guest Sushil Kumar Shinde, Minister of Power, said, "Private players will have a big role to play in power production and increased investments will be needed. There is a need for modernisation and augmentation of thermal power and the segment is fully open to private investors. Six projects have been completed and there is an expected investment of Rs 19,000 crore. Private sector participation which was 10 per cent at the end of 10th Plan has gone up to 30 per cent at present and will be over 50 per cent during the 12th Plan. As a result, we have added over 60,000 MW in the last 5œ years."Jayant Deo, MD & CEO, Indian Energy Exchange (IEX), said, "Private players in the sector are facing a lot of problems. One of the biggest issues faced is the large amount of power usage by consumers without any records."Gajendra Haldea, Advisor, Deputy Chairman, Infrastructure, said, "India's power sector is in a crisis and this can be resolved by introduction of competition, which will also help reduce tariffs. The most important issue is re-structuring and opening up of the sector. If re-structuring is implemented, it will attract domestic and international investors and power shortage will be a thing of the past.''Rahool Panandikar, Principal, The Boston Consulting Group, however, had a different point of view. He said, "FDI has not been very successful in the power sector and that has created a constant capital crunch in this sector. The Indian government would have to take a closer look at the policies and make them more investor-friendly."On day 2, chief guest Sriprakash Jaiswal, Union Minister of Coal, said, "Coal companies need to fast-track the mechanisation process. The coal sector is yet to be opened for private investments in commercial coal-mining. Coal production is a big challenge. India has to be dependent for a few more years on import of coal."Dipesh Dipu, Director, Energy and Resources, Deloitte, said, "A serious problem that plagues the industry is the availability of coal as well as the facility to transport whatever is available. A large number of coal blocks have not been tapped primarily due to rail connectivity. The government should auction these blocks and provide them with appropriate connectivity to railway networks."Pradeep Singh, VC and MD, IDFC Projects, in a panel discussion said, "There is enough coal for our lifetime. The point is to get it out. Private sector should not be given the right to handle natural resources. It is the right of the government and the private sector should be given the right to refine and supply them."Dr Rahul Walwalkar, VP (Emerging Technologies), Customised Energy Solutions, said, "Successful reforms have taken place on the generation side but the problem lies in distribution reforms. Open access is the most possible solution for T&D issues faced by the industry."The summit brought together policy-makers, and investors to discuss India's energy challenges and explore processes and systems to counter the various challenges faced by the sector.
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