The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) has revised the bid submission deadline for the 1,785 MW of solar tender (Tranche IV) floated for Rajasthan.
The tender was initially issued in March this year.
As per the tender document, the power procured by SECI from the projects would be sold to the distribution companies (DISCOMs) of Rajasthan. The buying entities will procure power through Rajasthan Urja Vikas Nigam Limited, which is the authorized agency for signing the power sale agreement on behalf of Rajasthan DISCOMs. SECI will act as an intermediary nodal agency for the procurement of power generated by the developer.
According to the new amendments, the last date of submitting the bids online has been extended to May 21, 2021, from the earlier deadline of April 15, 2021. The bids will be opened on May 25, 2021.
The performance bank guarantee sum of ₹800,000 (~$10,944) to be submitted by the successful bidders and the 18-month time frame of the scheduled commissioning date from the power purchase agreement’s (PPA) effective date remains unchanged. However, a new clause inserted in the tender document underlines that if a regulatory commission delays in adopting the tariff beyond 120 days from the effective date of the PPA, they would entail a corresponding extension in the scheduled commissioning date (SCD).
According to the amended clauses, solar power developers will be required to apply for connectivity at the identified substations within 30 days of the grant of registration with Rajasthan Renewable Energy Corporation (RREC). Earlier this was to be within 30 days of the effective date of PPA.
As per certain other amendments under the request for selection (RfS) bidding document, the SPD has to apply for registration with RREC within 30 days from the letter of award (LoA) being issued. Earlier, the window was 90 days.
The SPD will also apply for all the necessary permits and clearances within 30 days of the grant of registration with RREC.
Additionally, the winning bidder selected based on the RfS will have a 60-day window to sign the PPA with SECI after the issue of LoA, an increase from the earlier one-month deadline.
The successful bidder has also been granted a 40-day breather to submit the necessary documents to SECI, up from the 20-day deadline specified earlier. SECI has yet again clarified that it will not be liable for delay in verifying the documents and subsequent delay in signing of PPA if the bidders fail to stick to the 40-day deadline.
SECI further underscored that the bidders will have to strictly comply with the technical parameters mentioned in the tender document. One of the modifications states that the cells and modules used in the project under the RfS will have to be sourced only from the models and manufacturers included in the ‘approved list of models and manufacturers (ALMM),’ as published by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).
Bidders have also been asked to take note of the memorandum issued by MNRE on March 9, 2021, regarding the basic customs duty on solar cells and modules while responding to the RfS.
The agreement will come into effect from the 60th day from the LoA being issued to the solar developer, or any further date, as applicable.
The document also mentions that if the PPA is terminated, any damages or charges payable to the central or state transmission utility, for the connectivity of the project, will have to be borne by the party responsible for the failure or disruption.
The parties involved in the contract have agreed that the SPD will be liable to pay compensation under the SECI-SPD PPA for a shortfall in energy supply from the contracted energy on an annual basis. The minimum compensation payable to SECI by the SPD has been set at 25% of the cost of this shortfall in energy terms, calculated at the PPA tariff. This sum collected from the SPD will be passed on to the buying entity.
A fresh clause added to the document states that state government guarantee will be invoked only if SECI is unable to recover its dues under the PPA through a letter of credit and the payment security fund if any.
SECI has previously amended tenders to include BCD and ALMM. SECI amended the 25 MW solar tender in West Bengal, asking bidders to take note of the imposition of BCD on imported solar photovoltaic modules and cells. SECI also revised the tender for the 25 MW solar project with five years of operation and maintenance at Bharat Coking Coal Limited, Bhojudih Coal Washery, in the Purulia district of West Bengal.
According to Mercom’s India Solar Tender Tracker, SECI has issued 2,570 MW of solar projects under Tranche I, II, and III in Rajasthan.
Srinwanti is a copy editor at Mercom India, where she writes and edits news stories across the clean energy spectrum. Prior to Mercom, she has worked in book publishing at Macmillan Publishing House and Integra and honed her editorial and writing skills in both online and print media such as Reuters, Times Group Books, The Times of India, and Pune Mirror, covering local to international stories. More articles from Srinwanti Das.