India to allocate developers for about 100 solar projects
India?s regulating authority on the licensing of solar plots in the country, the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, will start project allotment in September. More than 1,000 firms have expressed interest in about 100 projects of 5MW capacity each. The National Solar Mission is supported by government funding of $19bn and aims to generate 20GW of solar power into the national grid and 2GW for off-grid by 2022.
Through a subsidiary of the National Thermal Power Corporation ? India?s largest state-owned power generator ? the government will sign power purchase agreements for 1GW during the first phase set to run to March 2013. As part of the first phase, India?s ministry of new and renewable energy have invited bids for a total of 500MW solar PV power generation capacity. About 100 companies will be selected through a reverse bidding process. Only one application per company, including its parent, affiliate or any group company, shall be allowed to develop one project, in order to ensure a wider participation from various solar power developers.
Recognizing the intensive capital costs involved, the Indian government may see the need to set aside dedicated equity funding for the solar projects in addition to the funds sponsoring the projects, according to Mr. Debashish Mahumdar, chairman and managing director of Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA). Stipulating that only well-funded developers will be awarded projects, the government says financial assistance will be offered through Power Finance Corporation (PFC) and Rural Electrification Corporation (REC), both formerly owned by the government.
Though foreign developers are welcome to participate, they are ?expected to procure their project components from domestic manufacturers as far as possible?, and will be barred from using foreign-made solar modules by 2011 and cells by 2012. The net worth of any firm looking to win a PV allocation must be equivalent to 150m rupees ($3.2m). For solar-thermal projects, developers? net worth must be 30m rupees per megawatt up to 20MW, with another 20m rupees on the books for projects larger than 20MW. PV installations must be finished one year after the signing of the power purchase agreement, while solar-thermal projects have 28 months.
INTPOW will be present at the Delhi International renewable Energy Conference (DIREC) in New Delhi from the 27th to the 29th of October. Mr. Trond Giske, Minister of Trade and Industry will speak at the DFIREC 2010 on Friday the 29th. Further information: intpow.com/events and
INTPOW partners and other industry participants that would like to participate in the Norwegian delegation are asked to contact Mrs. Anja Reiler at INTPOW: