Shortage of uranium and a shut-down at four plants dragged down revenues and profit of Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd for the fiscal ended March 2008.
The corporation’s net profit for the year dipped by 31 per cent to Rs 1,078 crore, from Rs 1,570 crore the previous year.
Income from operations declined by 7 per cent, to Rs 3,333 crore from Rs 3,592 crore.
Mr S Thakur, Executive Director (Corporate Planning), said that due to insufficient uranium supply, power production for the year fell to about 16,960 MU (million units) in 2007-08 from 18,000 MU the previous year.Shutdown of plants
The lack of uranium supply was compounded by the shut-down of Narora-I, Kaiga-III, Rajasthan-II and Madras-I plants. These 220 MW plants are under going technical upgradation, said Mr. Thakur.
The average plant load factor has decreased to 60 per cent from 90 per cent achieved last year. The 220 MW plants are now running at 150 to 160 MW so as to optimally use the fuel (uranium), he said.
He said that some of the uranium mining projects have been hampered due to delay in getting environmental clearances and also on account of the difficult terrain in which the mines are located. A new uranium mill, which was to go online, has also been delayed, Mr Thakur said.Tariff reduction
Mr Thakur said the earnings of the corporation have also been affected due to tariff reduction. Per unit tariff which was Rs 2.70 in 2006-07, has reduced to Rs 2.28 per unit in 2007-08 and the benefits passed to the customers. “As the tariffs are decided for five years there is no provision to increase it,” Mr Thakur said.
NPCIL has been affected by employee attrition too, said Mr. Thakur.(Source: The Hindu Business Line)