The government is planning bids for a total of 20,000 MW of solar energy plants projects in this financial year, of which 3,600 MW have already been completed, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy said on Friday.
The Ministry is planning bids for 30,000 MW of solar projects in 2018-19 and 2019-20, each. In wind energy, the Centre on Friday announced the third wind power auction of 2,000 MW, the largest of its kind in India so far.
Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister R.K. Singh also said that the government would soon invite expressions of interest for the setting up of end-to-end solar component manufacturing in India of 20 GW capacity. “We need manufacturing in India in solar,” he said. “There is no reason for imports, and so we will encourage manufacturing in India. We are planning a 20 GW auction, but only for those who are willing to manufacture in India. We will invite expressions of interest in the next four or five days.”
As per the Ministry’s plan, Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) will invite two separate bids for 3,000 MW of solar projects in December 2017 and January 2018 each. NTPC is to invite a bid for 5,000 MW of solar projects in February 2018, and another 6,000 MW will be bid out in March 2018 by SECI and other Central PSUs.
‘50% of 2022 target met’
In wind energy, the Ministry said it had already received bids for 32 GW of projects, which is more than 50% of the 60 GW target set for 2022. The government is expecting bids for a total of 8-9 GW this year, and 10 GW each in 2018-19 and 2019-20.
On problems faced by the sector, New and Renewable Energy Secretary Anand Kumar said. “One demand had to do with customs duty [being charged] for solar components.” Earlier, they wer exempt. “We have taken this up with the Finance Ministry… and the issue will be fixed in 10 days.”