Industry Analysis

Transparency in buying process

Imteyaz Siddiqui, Regional Area Sales Manager – South Asia & GCC, ISA Advance Instruments (I) Pvt. Ltd (Altanova Group).

Government initiatives are reformist
Most of the initiatives announced by the current government are reformist and hence will take some more time by when the results will be visible, believes Imteyaz Siddiqui, Regional Area Sales Manager – South Asia & GCC, ISA Advance Instruments (I) Pvt. Ltd (Altanova Group). However, he adds, “The focus of Indian government on attaining ‘Power for all’ has accelerated capacity addition in the country, and the growth is visible in all the three sectors namely generation, transmission, and distribution. New substations are regularly built, and within 3 years, India’s total power capacity has increased by nearly one-third from 243 GW in March 2014 to 320 GW in March 2017.”

Energy shortages in 2014 were 42,428 million units (4.2 per cent), which came down to 7,459 million units in 2017 (0.7 per cent). Similarly, peak energy shortage in 2014 was 6,103 MW (4.5 per cent), which came down to 2,608 MW (1.6 per cent) in 2017. In line with the government’s “One nation, One price and One grid” initiative, the transmission sector witnessed as much as 36 per cent (one third) increase in transmission capacity from 5,30,546 MVA in March 2014 to 7,22,949 MVA in March 2017. Alongside, the transmission lines saw a 26 per cent (one fourth) increase from 2,91,336 circuit kilometres (ckm) in March 2014 to 3,66,634 ckm in March 2017. According to Siddiqui, this has helped the industry supply and commission the projects that were pending for a long time. These data are quite encouraging, and we look forward to further growth-oriented decisions from the government.

Transparency in buying process
Bringing transparency in buying process/system is the single most important initiative that has already been proved as a game changer and will continue if the custodians continue to improve and implement it–the system will discourage wrong practices and encourage good-quality manufacturing and supply at competitive prices, believes Siddiqui.

Transparency has been the major driving factor behind this government’s major reform initiatives. In the power sector alone, to empower customers and track the working and performance of the ministry and its companies on a real-time basis, the Power Ministry has launched various mobile apps and websites. This, in turn, will ensure transparency and accountability.

Renewable energy and energy efficiency drive are growing continuously. Earlier these were considered as a niche industry dependent on government subsidies. “However, today it is largely driven by cost competitiveness. Investors are extremely excited to be part of the renewable growth story. The declining tariff due to competitive bidding and policy reforms are creating new possibilities. The momentum should continue,” he adds.

Reviving stalled project
Talking about the major changes observed during the past one year as far as improving the health of the industry is concerned, Siddiqui states, “The government is making its best effort to revive all the stalled projects in the power, energy and infrastructure sector. It is also focussing on energy efficiency because energy saved is energy earned. A lot of measures have been taken in this regard.”

For example, a consolidating demand from all states creates a huge demand that the -efficient agricultural pumps for farmers in rural India industry can serve. This energy efficiency drive includes the distribution of nearly 23 crore LED bulbs by the government, along with 33 crore by private companies. This LED program is further extended to fans, air-conditioning, tube lights (for urban areas), motors and energy

ISA’s performance
The last two financial years were good for ISA Advance Instruments (I) Pvt. Ltd (Altanova Group) when the company achieved more than 30 per cent growth. It is increasing its footprint in the Indian market, and now has a strong customer base to see a similar growth in the coming year.

Adapting to changes
Siddiqui acknowledges that a few reforms undertaken by the government are creating a lot of disturbances in the business cycle. He adds, “We are trying to cope up with these changes, such as demonetisation and GST, which have affected our business to a great extent in the last few months. We understand that change is the only constant, and these reforms will prove to be good in the longer run. Our strategy is to adapt to these changes as fast as possible so that our customers do not face any inconvenience.”

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