Indian solar manufacturers have said the government’s 2019 interim budget offers ‘nothing for renewables.’ While manufacturers were expecting confidence-building measures and clear direction to meet the target of 175 GW renewable energy by 2022, the interim budget did not offer any incentives or subsidies. Domestic manufacturers have also said that renewable projects are facing difficulty getting finance, but the budget provided “no ray of hope”.
India’s solar capacity grew 10 times in past 5 years, says finance minister
India’s finance minister Piyush Goyal, in his maiden Budget speech, said electric vehicles and renewables will make India a pollution-free nation. While citing the International Solar Alliance, Goyal said, “India’s installed solar generation capacity has grown over 10 times in past five years. This sector is now creating lakhs of new age jobs.”
Meanwhile, India’s total installed renewables capacity continues to grow. Renewables make 22% (77.5 GW) of India’s total power capacity (353 GW). The share of solar capacity rose to 7.9% (27.9 GW) of the total power capacity at the end of 2018, while amongst renewables, solar now accounts for approximately 36% of the total installed capacity.
Tamil Nadu’s new solar policy sets ambitious target of 9,000 MW by 2023
Tamil Nadu released its new solar policy, setting an ambitious solar target of 9,000 MW by 2023. The state’s installed solar capacity till 2018 was at 2,200 MW. It aims to acquire 6,800 MW solar power in the next four years.
Experts said Tamil Nadu will have to really intensify solar installations to meet the target, compared to the slower 400 MW of new solar capacity it could manage annually over the last five years. In a shift away from installation of scale, Tamil Nadu plans to keep 40% of the new installations in the smaller, consumer rooftop category, which is exempted from electricity tax for two years – starting Feb 4, 2019.
Distributed solar power market in India to grow to Rs. 10,000 crores by 2023
Recent research has revealed that Indian market for off-grid solar power products such as solar lanterns, solar pumps, etc., will grow more than two-and-a-half times to Rs. 10,117 crores by 2023. The research was conducted by GOGLA, a global association of the off-grid solar power industry.
Currently, the market for distributed solar in India stands at Rs. 3,875 crores. Researchers said India represented over 30% of the world sales of distributed standalone solar products in the first half of 2018. The private-player driven market has enabled the sector to advance lanterns into the mainstream.
Leh and Kargil to set up 14 MW Solar Projects, with storage system
The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) will help set up a 14 MW solar power project, with battery energy storage system (BESS), in Leh and Kargil. Both Leh and Kargil will have a 7 MW solar project each, with battery storage of 21 MWh.
The projects will have a fixed tariff of ₹2 (~$0.028)/kWh with Viability Gap Funding [maximum VGF support of ₹1,820 million (~$25.60 million) will be provided to set up the entire capacity].
Govt. to issue concessional Customs duty certificates to solar developers online
Centre has launched a new website for solar developers that will issue concessional Customs duty certificates (CCDC) for setting up power projects and for importing items to set up solar power projects in India.
The website came into existence after the government observed there was duplication of work at state nodal agencies and the ministry before approval of the bill of material, and there was no information available on the sanctioned projects.