Budget 2017 Brings Lower Indirect Levies for Clean Energy Equipment
The Budget has given a boost to renewable energy, announcing another 20,000 MW of solar park development in phase II and a slew of duty reductions on components for fuel cell-based power generating and biogas systems, as well as wind energy equipment. Giving a boost to clean energy programme, the Union Finance Minister Shri Arun Jaitley proposed massive cuts in excise and customs duties on materials used in solar and wind plants, and also announced the second phase of solar park development for 20 GW capacity. Besides, the minister also proposed to feed about 7,000 stations with solar power in the medium term saying that a beginning has already been made in 300 stations and work will be taken up for 2,000 railway stations as part of 1,000 MW solar mission.
Commenting on the budget proposals about renewable energy, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy, and Mines, Shri Piyush Goyal, said that his ministry would soon start auction for another 20 GW of solar parks in the country as announced in the Budget.
The Finance Minister has proposed zero basic customs duty (BCD) on solar tempered glass for use in manufacture of solar cells/panels/modules. At present, BCD on those is 5 per cent. Similarly, he proposed to reduce countervailing duty (CVD) on parts/raw materials for manufacturing of solar tempered glass for use in solar photovoltaic cells/ modules, solar power generating equipment or systems, flat plate solar collector, solar photovoltaic module, and panel for water pumping and other applications, to 6 per cent from the existing 12.5 per cent. The Budget has also proposed to reduce excise duty on these materials to 6 per cent from the existing 12.5 per cent.
It is also proposed to reduce the BCD, CVD, and SAD (Special Additional Duty) of 24 per cent on resin and catalyst for manufacturing of cast components for Wind Operated Energy Generators to 5 per cent. However, it is proposed to levy 6 per cent excise duty on solar tempered glass for use in solar photovoltaic cells/modules, solar power generating equipment or systems, flat plate solar collector, solar photovoltaic module and panel for water pumping and other applications. At present, there is no excise duty on these materials.