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India imported solar cells and modules worth $597.48 million (~₹47.39 billion) in the second quarter (Q2) of the calendar year (CY) 2022, a decline of 22% year-over-year (YoY), according to Department of Commerce data.
On a quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) basis, imports fell by 51% compared to $1.23 billion (~₹92.62 billion).
Exports during the quarter decreased 57% to $26.22 million (~₹2.07 billion) compared to $60.58 million (~₹4.8 billion) in the same period last year. On a QoQ basis, exports rose 250% from $7 million (~₹555.1 million) in Q1 2022.
Solar imports in Q2 2022
China was the largest exporter of solar modules and cells to India in Q2 2022, making up nearly 85.3%, followed by Vietnam, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, and Hong Kong with 9.1%, 3.5%, 1.7%, 0.1%, and 0.1%, respectively. In Q1 2022, China’s share of India’s solar imports was 95.7%.
As the Basic Customs Duty (BCD) kicked in in April, the imports, which witnessed a significant increase in the last two quarters, have come down. The rise in module imports in the previous two quarters was due to Indian solar developers stockpiling around 10 GW of solar cells and modules to save on costs.
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy’s (MNRE) amended ‘Approved List of Models and Manufacturers’ (ALMM) order mandates that only the models and manufacturers included in the ALMM list would be eligible for use in government projects, government-assisted projects, and projects under government programs in the country. For tenders issued after April 10, 2021, developers have to procure modules only from the list of module manufacturers enlisted under ALMM, which currently has only Indian manufacturers listed.
The effect of BCD combined with having to comply with the ALMM order has started reflecting in the export-import data. The cost of modules has shot up by 40% after the BCD imposition, which has also affected the import of modules.
The United States continued to be the largest market for solar exports from India in Q2 2022. The U.S. accounted for 45% of the market share, compared to 52% in Q1 2022. Somalia, Afghanistan, Oman, Canada, and South Africa made up 20%, 13%, 11%, 2 and 1%, respectively.
For an in-depth look at the data, analysis, and charts, subscribe to our quarterly market report – Mercom India Solar Update. Detailed solar import and export data by component types, suppliers, manufacturers, and developers are available in Mercom’s India Solar EXIM Tracker.