NHPC Extends Deadline for its 2 GW Solar Tender, Raises Tariff Cap

The National Hydroelectric Power Corporation (NHPC) has extended the bid submission deadline of its tender for 2 GW of solar projects.

The deadline for the submission of bids has been extended from October 17, 2019, to January 10, 2020, while the bid opening date has now been scheduled for January 14, 2020. The original deadline for this tender was September 27, 2019.

Apart from the deadline extension, the NHPC has also notified other modifications to the tender.

The minimum tariff payable to the project has now been revised to ₹2.78 (~$0.04)/kWh from ₹2.65 ($0.037)/kWh. Initially, the NHPC had set a tariff ceiling of ₹2.95 ($0.041)/kWh. But later, in October 2019, the ceiling tariff was revised to ₹2.65 ($0.037)/kWh. The tariff will be applicable for 25 years.


The amount of earnest money deposit (EMD) has also been reduced from ₹1 million (~$13,978) to ₹400,000 (~$5,591)/MW.

Also, the performance bank guarantee (PBG) has been revised to ₹2 million (27,957)/MW from ₹2.5 million (~$34,946)/MW.

A senior official of NHPC told Mercom that the bid submission date has been extended due to the MNRE’s guidelines which were amended in October 2019.

“We’ve extended the bid submission deadline because of the amended guidelines and also, the bidders wanted these amendments to be incorporated in the tender document,” he said.

According to the bidders, the tariff of ₹2.65 ($0.037)/kWh is quite low compared to the fact that there are “unresolved and ongoing issues in the solar sector which will have a direct impact on the costs of such projects.”

The NHPC states that the interested bidder can bid for projects at multiple locations as long as each project has a minimum capacity of 50 MW. However, the bidder is expected to quote a single tariff for the entire project capacity offered. Also, The total capacity of bids should not exceed 600 MW.

One of the change in the tender calls for the cells and modules used in the project to be sourced only from the models and manufacturers included in the “Approved List of Models and Manufacturers” (ALMM) as published by MNRE and updated as on the date of commissioning of the project.

The bidders have to declare the annual capacity utilization factor (CUF) of the projects at the time of submitting the response to RfS, and the developers will be allowed to revise it once within the first year of the project commissioning. After that, the CUF will remain the same for the entire term of the PPA. The CUF at any point cannot be less than 19%.

Another clause added is that in case the partial capacity offered to the last bidder after the conclusion of the e-reverse auction is less than 50% of the total quoted capacity by the bidder, the bidder can refuse partial capacity offered. On the other hand, if the partial capacity offered is greater than or equal to 50% of the total quoted capacity by the bidder, it will be mandatory to accept the partial capacity offered, subject to the total cumulative capacity awarded after the auction to the successful bidders not exceeding 2,000 MW.

 

Image credit: Prodiel