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Promotion of competition in all segments of the power supply industry, including in the transmission segment, is one of the cardinal objectives of the Electricity Act, 2003. Requisite policy directions and regulatory guidelines in this regard have been provided in the National Electricity Policy (NEP) and the Tariff Policy. However, competition and private sector participation has been below expectations to some extent in the transmission segment. An objective analysis of the issues in this regard and finding out ways and means for overcoming these have assumed added importance in the present context of power system development in the country. This is especially true in the light of (a) the large scale expansion of transmission system required in the coming years; (b) the capital intensive nature of the projects necessitating mobilization of additional finances outside the public sector; and (c) the key role transmission has to play in the successful implementation of the Country’s energy transition program, including for successful integration of RE projects. The fact that a robust transmission system is also a basic pre-requisite for realising our Prime Minister’s vision of “One Sun, One World, One Grid” further adds to the importance of the topic. Keeping these in view, this note has tried to briefly review how competition in transmission has evolved in the country over the years and the issues that merit consideration (including the challenges that have arisen following COVID-19), which could set the context for discussing on how competition and private sector participation can be enhanced in the transmission sector.

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