The Minister of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), R.K. Singh, told the Lok Sabha that power supply agreements (PSAs) for 16.8 GW of renewable energy projects are yet to be signed. These projects were floated by the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
These projects include a 12 GW solar project under the Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS) linked with manufacturing, 1.2 GW under ISTS solar Tranche-VII, 0.4 GW under the round-the-clock program, 1.2 GW under ISTS solar Tranche – VIII, and 2 GW under ISTS solar Tranche – IX for solar and hybrid projects.
To avoid such delays in the future, the minister added that instructions had been issued to renewable energy implementation agencies for formulating an annual plan of tendering renewable projects.
It has also advised coordination with other central agencies such as SECI for floating of tenders and opening bids to avoid concurrent bids. Apart from this, bids would be floated under relevant standard bidding guidelines issued by the government, abiding by MNRE’s advice concerning tenders for RE projects.
According to Mercom India Research, SECI has so far tendered 16.8 GW of ISTS solar projects under tranche I to X; and auctioned around 10.8 GW. The latest SECI Tranche – IX auction saw a record-low bid of ₹2.36 (~$0.0313)/kWh.
Mercom has previously reported that SECI has been pooling the tariffs discovered in competitive bidding every six months. Tariffs are pooled every year between January to June and July to December. This is to ensure the availability of solar at a uniform rate to all the DISCOMs and speed up the process of signing PSAs.
Pooled tariff is the weighted average of tariffs discovered in competitive bidding for a specific period. Some auctions result in low bids than the others, and it is comparatively tough to sell power to DISCOMs at higher tariff rates. So, the tariffs are pooled so that the DISCOMs procure power at the average tariffs.
Image credit: Thomas Lloyd Group / CC BY-SA (4.0)
Rahul is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Before entering the world of renewables, Rahul was head of the Gujarat bureau for The Quint. He has also worked for DNA Ahmedabad and Ahmedabad Mirror. Hailing from a banking and finance background, Rahul has also worked for JP Morgan Chase and State Bank of India. More articles from Rahul Nair.