Govt to float tender for adding 20GW of solar energy capacity

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The government plans to seek bids globally for 20 GW of solar generation capacity by companies ready to set up manufacturing facilities in India.

“Twenty GW will be auctioned with condition that only those companies can participate that will set up manufacturing here,” RK Singh, minister of power and new and renewable energy, said at a conference on Friday.

“We have some aspirations..We want manufacturing in solar and when the fastest-growing installation is happening in India, there is no reason to import from other countries… so we are going to encourage manufacturing here,” the minister added.

The government plans to install 175 GW of renewable energy by 2022. While the government is confident of surpassing the target ‘comfortably,’ it is exploring ways to add incremental capacity through floating solar, solar manufacturing and offshore wind projects, among other measures. “We are trying to test the market at present. The ministry will soon float an expression of interest, which would mean that any person who is willing to set up manufacturing facilities in India can set up a capacity of 20 GW here,” Anand Kumar, secretary in the ministry of new and renewable energy, told reporters.

“We are linking manufacturing of solar with developers.” The government has not considered incentivising domestic manufacturers as the tender itself will create demand  solar equipment in the country. “We are not giving any incentives yet… I am only creating a market here,” Kumar said. The expression of interest will be issued in three to four days and the request for proposals should be issued about 45 days later, the secretary added.

The government on Friday set out a roadmap for auctioning of wind and solar power to achieve the target of 175 GW capacity installation by 2022. Kumar said that to achieve 100 GW of solar power by 2022, the ministry, along with the states, will lay out bids for ground-mounted solar parks for 20 GW in 2017-18.

Of this, 3.6 GW have already been bid out and 17 GW will be bid out by March. Additionally, 30 GW will be bid out in 2018-19 and 30 GW in 2019-20. Out of the wind capacity installation target of 60 GW, 32 GW have already been commissioned and the government intends to issue bids of cumulative capacity of about 8 GW this year.

Of this, 5 GW have already been bid out, 1,500-2,000 MW will be bid out in January 2018 and 1,500-2,000 MW in March 2018. A total of 10 GW will be auctioned in the financial year ending 2018 and 10 GW in the year ending 2019, leaving a margin of two years for commissioning of the projects.




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