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PFC, REC approve loans worth Rs 1.18 lakh cr under discom liquidity package

Friday, 13 Nov 2020
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The Power Finance Corporation (PFC) and REC have so far been sanctioned loans worth Rs 1.18 lakh crore under the liquidity package for stressed power distribution utilities. 
 
In May 2020, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced Rs 90,000 crore liquidity infusion into cash-strapped discoms facing demand slump due to COVID-19. The package was later increased to Rs 1.2 lakh crore by the Ministry of Power. 
 
The company and REC have sanctioned an amount of Rs 1,18,273crore under the scheme of liquidity package to eligible discoms up to 31 October 2020. 
 
The loans under the package will be co-funded by PFC and REC in equal proportion. The loans will be sanctioned in two equal tranches. Both the firms have disbursed about Rs 31,100 crore under the package. 
 
Under the liquidity infusion scheme of the Centre, REC and PFC are extending financial assistance at a concessional rate of interest. The package was announced on 13 May 2020. 
 
The discoms require liquidity to pay off their bills to the generation companies (gencos) and transmission firms (transcos). 
 
The Centre had enforced a payment security mechanism from 1 August 2019. Under this mechanism, discoms are required to open letters of credit for getting power supply. 
 
The Central government had also given moratorium to discoms for paying dues to power generating firms in view of COVID-19. The government had also waived the penal charges for late payment of dues.
 
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