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Will privatising state distribution utilities reduce aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses?

This has been a long discussion in various energy forums all across India. India is still a country incurring almost 30 per cent line loss, among few top rankers in having high energy loss network worldwide. Private financing will definitely help India in replacing old high loss cables with new efficient distribution systems with smart switching and also by including energy efficient transformers, it can improve a lot. Smart metering helps in capturing right billing and revenue collection for the DISCOMs.

Also net metering helps in overall energy efficiency approach by utilising captive power plants at load centres and distribution substations with RMU moves the energy in multi-circuit and thus meeting the energy demand of load centres while reducing the max demand. Reduction of max demand, smart metering system, employing more and more load centres and improvement of power actor indirectly helps a lot to reduce AT & C losses.

Sanjib Mitra, Country Head & Sr VP – Transformer Division, Electrotherm India


Distribution aids the most vital function in India’s power supply chain. However, DISCOMs continue to face problems such as aggregate technical and commercial, or AT&C, losses which account to nearly 20 per cent. Privatisation can be a possible solution to overcome this challenge. By privatising state distribution utilities and/or the use of a franchisee model, companies can reduce aggregate technical and commercial (AT&C) losses.

Also, digitisation of the power grid in the country will ensure better optimisation of resources within the sector and will eventually bring down the cost of electricity in the country. Technology capabilities such as the Internet of Things (IoT), analytics and cloud will play a critical role in digital transforming the grid. Schneider Electric’s open IoT-enabled framework EcoStruxure is one such solution that will ensure higher efficiency in grid operations, optimal asset management and facilitate an overall shift towards digitisation of power distribution in India to achieve the government’s goal of providing reliable 24*7 Power For All.

Anil Kadam, General Manager, Business Development, Solution Architect- Smart Grid/Smart Cities, Schneider Electric India.

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