For Immediate Release

Conference Dwells into investments in Energy Sector

Chennai August 17, 2019: Underling the importance of a closed monitoring of investments in the energy sector, raising concerns about the growing non-performing assets in the power sector and seeking for a just and equitable energy paradigm in the country, the two-day Energy Finance Conference 2019 ended today at the IIT-Madras. First of its kind in India, the conference brought together financial analysts, energy experts, journalists, activists and academicia to discuss different aspects of energy finance, both of the fossil fuel as well as renewable energy sources.

The conference, which was jointly organised by the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT-Madras and the Centre for Financial Accountability, New Delhi, witnessed discussion on India’s energy trajectory; role of finance in energy transition; financial crisis in power DISCOMs; a secure, sustainable and innovative energy future; socio-economic costs of the Indian energy; state regulations and energy governance, among others.

During the conference, Vikram Kapoor, CMD of the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) released the report by the Centre for Financial Accountability’s Coal vs Renewables report, which revealed a 90% decline in lending to coal-fired power plants in 2018. The report examined 52 project finance deals comprising a loan component, across 54 coal-fired power and renewable energy projects (defined as hydroelectric, geothermal, wave, wind and solar power projects), with a financial close date from 1 January 2018 to 31 December 2018.

The speakers at the conference included Vikram Kapoor, CMD, TANGEDCO; M.G. Devasahayam, former Member and Chairman, Haryana State Electricity Board; VP Raja, former Chairman of the Ministry of Environment and Forest’s Expert Appraisal Committee on Thermal Projects and Coal Mining; Shuboday Ganta, Associate Vice President, Transaction Advisory Services, Ernst & Young; Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, veteran journalist and filmmaker; Rishabh Jain, Manager – Market Intelligence, Centre for Energy Finance, Council on Energy, Environment and Water;  Ashok Shreenivas, Senior Fellow at Prayas (Energy Group);  K. E. Raghunathan, MD, Solkar Solar Industry Limited; Svati Bhogle, CEO, Technology Informatics Design Endeavour (TIDE); Nitin Sethi, Business Standard; Vibhuti Garg, Energy Economist, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis;  Dr Thomas Franco, former General Secretary, All India Bank Officers Confederation;  Nityanand Jayaraman, writer and researcher; Leo Saldanha, Environment Support Group; Bhargavi Rao, Independent Researcher; among others.

Reflecting on the two-day conference Prof. Sudhir Chella Rajan, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences said, “The conference was unique in the sense it brought together regulators, policymakers, academics, policy analysts, industry experts, activists and journalists. We are delighted to have hosted it. Some of the discussions like revoking the contracts, including the external costs in the pricing of the energy etc. were quite provocative and important. I do hope that similar discussions continue to take place.”

“The effort was to bring together different interest groups to look at the investments and its impacts in the energy sector from different perspectives. To that extent the conference is a success. The challenge is to take it to the next level, making conversations on transparent, accountable and responsible investments mainstream,” said Joe Athialy, Centre for Financial Accountability.

 More about the Conference: www.cenfa.org/energy

Contact details:

  1. Priya Dharshini: +91-9654680488
  2. Ankit Agrawal: +91-9560361801
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