New Delhi: Country's largest power producer NTPC has earmarked an investment of Rs 41,000 crore for setting up four thermal projects in the coal-rich states of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh in the next five years.

NTPC has signed preliminary agreements with the governments of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh for the execution of four coal-based power projects with a combined capacity of over 8,300 MW.

The company would set up three projects -- 1,980 MW project at Barethi, 1,320 MW at Khargone and 2,640 MW at Gadarwara in Madhya Pradesh and a 2,400 MW Lara project in Chhattisgarh.

"We have signed agreements for setting up four thermal projects -- Barethi, Khargone, Gadarwara and Lara projects at an investment of over Rs 41,000 crore to be executed over the next Five-Year Plan period (2012-17)," an NTPC official said.

The company is also executing 1,980 (3x660) MW Sipat power project in Chhattisgarh, the first 660 MW unit of which has been commissioned and the other two units would be commissioned by March, 2012.

NTPC generates over 34,000 MW electricity with 15 coal- based and 7 gas-based power stations besides 6 joint venture or subsidiary power projects across the country.

It has set an ambitious target of taking overall power generation to 75,000 MW by 2017.

The company is working on projects of about 40,000 MW at present. Projects with capacity of over 14,000 MW are under various stages of implementation.

NTPC added capacity of about 2,500 MW during 2010-11 by commissioning Dadri (490 MW), Korba (500 MW), Farakka (500 MW), Simhadri (500 MW) and Jhajjar (500 MW) units.