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New Delhi : The Govt. of India ( GoI) on October 12, 2021, accorded ‘Maharatna’ status to the state-owned Power Finance Corporation Ltd (PFC) giving it greater operational and financial autonomy. An order to this effect was issued on October 12, 2021, by the Department of Public Enterprises, under the Ministry of Finance.
Incorporated in 1986, PFC is the largest Infrastructure Finance Company today, exclusively dedicated to Power Sector under the administrative control of the Ministry of Power.
Union Power and New & Renewable Energy Minister R K Singh congratulated PFC and remarked that conferment of ‘Maharatna’ status is a reflection of the confidence of the Govt. of India on PFC’s strategic role in the overall development of Indian Power Sector and an endorsement of its sterling performance. This new recognition will enable PFC to offer competitive financing for the power sector, which will go a long way in making available affordable and reliable ‘Power For All 24×7’, Singh said .
The enhanced powers that come with Maharatna Status will also help PFC in pushing the Government’s agenda of funding under the National Infrastructure Pipeline, national commitment of 40% green energy by 2030, and effective monitoring and implementation of the New Revamped Distribution Sector Scheme with an outlay of more than Rs.3 Lakh crore, Singh said, according to a PIB release.
The grant of ‘Maharatna’ status to PFC will impart enhanced powers to the PFC Board while taking financial decisions. The Board of a ‘Maharatna’ CPSE can make equity investments to undertake financial joint ventures and wholly-owned subsidiaries and undertake mergers and acquisitions in India and abroad, subject to a ceiling of 15% of the Net Worth of the concerned CPSE, limited to Rs 5,000 crore in one project. The Board can also structure and implement schemes relating to personnel and Human Resource Management and Training. They can also enter into technology Joint Ventures or other strategic alliances among others.
R S Dhillon, CMD, PFC, said that PFC has received the Maharatna Status on the back of exceptional financial performance during the last 3 years. Despite Covid, PFC witnessed the highest ever annual sanctions and disbursements to the Power Sector to the tune of Rs 1.66 Lakh Crore and Rs 88,300 Crore during FY 2020-21 and the highest ever profit of Rs 8,444 crore in FY 20210-21. PFC played a significant role amid Covid by funding DISCOMs under the Liquidity Infusion Scheme (‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat Scheme’) to avert liquidity crisis in Power Sector.