Future Solar Bids to be Coupled with 50 Percent Manufacturing Component_ R.K. Singh

Developers of renewable projects will soon be responsible for at least 50 percent of the manufacturing component, news agency PTI reported.

“We are going to come out with bigger bids, but our future bids will be tagged along with manufacturing. We will bid out capacity plus the commitment to manufacture up to 50 percent of the capacity, that will be the manufacturing of solar cells,” the Minister for Power R.K. Singh told PTI.

This looks like a move to support the domestic manufacturing industry without running afoul of WTO rules. If these tenders are large enough, Chinese companies may jump at the opportunity to bid.

The government will also make it compulsory for renewable project developers to manufacture storage systems, the minister added.

The Center sees a huge opportunity in the future of storage systems, and will add the storage component to the bids steadily. Certain proportions will then be made obligatory for the developers to manufacture.

“We are going to be one of the biggest markets for storage in the world,” Singh added.

Currently there is negligible energy storage manufacturing capacity in the country.

According to Singh, India has attracted a $42 billion investment in the field of renewable energy in the last four years. It was achieved by facilitating the market and investing in transmission.

The minister recently made the statement that, “India may cross 225 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by 2022.” This seems unlikely to be achieved given the current shape of things, as reported by Mercom.

According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, just over 22 GW of solar PV projects have been installed across the country, and these include both rooftop as well as ground-mounted solar PV projects.

India’s installed wind power capacity stands at 34 GW, while the goal is to reach 60 GW by 2022.

In the next four years, India needs to install 100 GW of renewable energy capacity to meet the target of 175 GW renewables by 2022. Out of the remaining 100 GW, solar needs to account for 78 GWs of power addition.

Recently, Singh announced the government would issue 100 GW of a single solar tender. This would comprise storage and solar equipment manufacturing components.