Finance minister announces provisions for power sector in Union Budget 2020-21

As part of the budget 2020-21, the finance minister has announced a concessional corporate tax rate of 15 per cent for new players in the electricity generation segment. In addition, all states/union territories have been mandated to replace conventional energy meters with prepaid smart meters in the next three years. The budget acknowledges the financial stress of discoms and asserts that further reform measures will be undertaken for the distribution segment. The finance minister has also advised utilities to shut down old and inefficient plants with emissions above the preset norms. Further, the PM-KUSUM scheme has been expanded to provide 2 million farmers with stand-alone solar pumps and help 1.5 million farmers to shift to solar power pumps from grid-connected pump sets. It has also been proposed to set up large solar power capacity alongside rail tracks on land owned by Indian Railways.