The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) has announced two new separate tenders for 950 MW of grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) projects in the states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
SECI has tendered 200 MW of grid-connected solar PV projects to be developed at the Pavagada Solar Park in Tumkur, Karnataka. The capacity has been tendered under the National Solar Mission (NSM) Phase-II Batch-IV Tranche-XIV. The bid-submission deadline is February 20, 2018.
A single bidder can bid for a minimum of 50 MW and a maximum of 200 MW capacity.
According to Mercom India Research, four 50 MW blocks, namely, B23, B24, B25 and B26 have been kept ready at the Pavagada solar park to develop this capacity.
SECI has also tendered 750 MW of grid-connected solar PV projects to be developed at the Kadapa Solar Park in Andhra Pradesh. The capacity has been tendered under the NSM Phase-II Batch-IV Tranche-XV. The last date of bid submission is February 23, 2018.
A single bidder can bid for a minimum 250 MW and maximum 750 MW capacity.
Both the tenders are global tenders, but Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) cannot participate. For both the tenders, the scope of work for includes design, supply, construction, procurement, installation, testing, commissioning of the project. It would also include developing the required transmission infrastructure. The SECI has fixed ₹2.93 (~$0.046)/kWh as the upper tariff ceiling for these tenders.
The projects will be developed on a ‘build own operate’ basis. For all the projects being developed, the SECI will enter into a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the bidders. The PPA is expected to be signed within one month from the date of issue of Letter of Intent (LoI). SECI will sell the power to the state Distribution Companies (DISCOMs) in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
In August 2016, Mercom had reported that the SECI tendered 200 MW of solar at Pavagada Solar Park Tranche-VI, with provisions for Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) of 5MW/2.5MWh which were later cancelled. Also, 500 MW of solar projects under the open category, 150 MW of solar under the DCR category, and 100 MW (open category) that were tendered in Kadapa solar park last year were also later cancelled.
When asked whether this is a retender of the same capacity, a SECI official said, “No this is not a retender, the previous tenders were cancelled, scrapped.” In the new Pavagada Solar Park tender, there is no provision of BESS, this is a completely different tender”.
In case of the 750 MW at Kadapa Solar Park, there is no provision of DCR category, the SECI official added.
With this development, the SECI has tendered 1,225 MW of grid-connected solar in January 2018 so far.
On January 4, SECI tendered 275 MW of grid-connected solar PV projects to be developed in the Uttar Pradesh Solar Park. These tenders are part of government goal of tendering 3 GW of solar in the month of January 2018.
After a period of lull, the month of December 2017 witnessed a surge in tendering and auction activity in solar sector in the country. Over 2,500 MW of solar was tendered and over 750 MW was auctioned in December alone, according to data from Mercom India Solar Tender Tracker.