India allocates a further 750 MW of solar capacity through its National Solar Mission

India allocates a further 750 MW of solar capacity through its National Solar Mission

The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), the government agency overseeing Indias Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM), has awarded permits for 750 MW of solar projects in the frame of its auction for new solar power capacity, according to Bloomberg. The Indian government will provide 18.75 billion INR in subsidies for these projects. Half of the capacity awarded through Phase II, Batch I of the JNNSM is eligible to use imported solar equipment. The winners of the import-eligible capacity priced electricity generated by their proposed PV systems at an average of 6,500 INR ($105) per MWh, down 25% from a national tender 2 years ago, reports Bloomberg, citing solar consultancy Bridge to India Energy Pvt. Developers planning to use locally produced solar products asked for nearly twice as much in government grants as developers expected to use imported equipment. US-based SunEdison and Indian developer Azure Power India Pvt. won the most capacity at 100 MW each, while Acme Solar Energy Ltd. was allocated 80 MW. Infrastructure & Financial Services Ltd., Solairedirect SA and India-based Hero Group also secured grants and permits. Projects proposed by First Solar Inc., Welspun Energy Ltd. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.s ReNew Power Ventures Pvt. were not selected. In January, SECI revealed that it had received 58 PV project proposals totaling 2,170 MW in response to its 750 MW RfP. Projects awarded licenses through the auction will be developed under a Viability Gap Fund (VGF) mechanism that covers up to 30% of the project cost or 2.5 crore INR per MW, whichever is lower. Developers submitted bids specifying the amount of funding they sought the lowest bids won a government grant and a development license. Remaining funding will come from the developer itself or from financing agreements. The government grants will be released gradually, with the first 50% paid out upon commissioning and the remaining funds paid out in 10% increments over the following 5 years. Projects selected in the auction are expected to be online by the end of April 2015 and must be between 10 and 50 MW (AC) in size


SMART GRID Bulletin March 2018

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