NTPC Reduces EPC Solar Tender Capacity to 500 MW, Limits Project Location to Gujarat

NTPC Limited has revised its previous tender for an engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) package for 600 MW of solar projects in the country. The tender capacity has now been reduced to 500 MW of solar projects in Gujarat.

NTPC had originally floated the project in May. It invited bids for an EPC package and land to develop solar projects up to 600 MW capacity. These interstate transmission systems (ISTS) connected solar projects were initially to be developed anywhere in India.

According to the company’s corrigendum, the scope of work will now include the design, engineering, manufacturing, supplying, installation, and commissioning of the project in Gujarat. Previously, the scope included the complete EPC works required to develop the project and the power evacuation system up to the closest ISTS substation.

When Mercom reached out to NTPC to find out the reasons that led to these changes, the official declined to comment.

The last date for submitting bids was also revised to November 24, 2020, from June 22, 2020, previously. Individual project sizes must be at least 50 MW or higher and must be quoted in multiples of 10 MW. A single bidder can quote a maximum of 300 MW of projects.

Interested bidders are expected to pay a bid security amount of ₹20 million (~$268,897)  for projects up to 50 MW, ₹50 million (~$268,897) for projects between 60 MW and 110 MW, ₹100 million (~$1.3 million) for projects between 120 MW and 220 MW, and ₹200 million (~$2.7 million) for projects between 230 MW and 300 MW in size.

Selected bidders are expected to provide three years of operation and maintenance services for the solar project, including the switchyard and power evacuation system up to the interconnecting state transmission utility’s substation.

Bidders must have previously executed projects with a similar scope of work for at least 40 MW of projects cumulatively. At least one of these projects must have been 10 MW or higher and should have been in operation for at least the last six months. Solar project developers who meet these criteria are also allowed to place bids.

Alternatively, applicants with experience executing industrial projects as a developer or EPC contractor in the areas of power, steel, oil and gas, petrochemical, fertilizer, cement, coal mining, coal handling, or any other process industry with a total value of at least ₹2.1 billion (~$28.2 million) in the last ten years are also allowed to apply.

The average annual turnover requirements remained unchanged. Bidders must have made at least ₹2.1 billion (~$28.2 million) per year in the last three years.

According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, NTPC has 875 MW of projects commissioned and about 2.3 GW under development pipeline, as of June 2020. It has also issued tenders for 14.6 GW of large-scale power projects, according to Mercom India Tender Tracker.