India allocates 1.5GW of solar to four developers in tender

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NTPC solar PV plant
NTPC Renewable Energy secured 250MW in this tender. Image: NTPC

The state-owned Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) has allocated 1.5GW of solar capacity in a recent tender, with four businesses winning the bid at an average price of INR2.56 (US$0.031) per kWh.

JSW Neo Energy secured the highest share of 700MW with a tariff of INR2.56 per kWh. Sunsure Solarpark Fourteen and Tejorupa Renewables India Project won 300MW and 250MW respectively at a tariff of INR 2.56 per kWh each.

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NTPC Renewable Energy secured the remaining 250MW at INR2.57 per kWh. However, it submitted a 600MW bid in the tendering process.

The projects will be developed on a build-own-operate basis and SECI will enter into a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with the successful bidders. The developers will be responsible for identifying land, installing and owning the projects, obtaining connectivity and necessary approvals, and interconnecting with the interstate transmission system (ISTS) network for the supply of power to SECI.

India’s solar capacity additions recorded a significant drop last year, as data from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) showed that India only added 10.01GW of solar PV capacity in 2023, a decrease of almost 4GW from the 13.9GW added in 2022. IEEFA attributed project commissioning delays to procurement issues from the Approved List of Models and Manufacturers (ALMM) policy.

However, India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) announced in late March that the ALMM would be reimposed effective from 1 April. The ALMM was suspended from March 2023 due to concerns over an inadequate supply of domestically-made modules to meet demand. Thus, projects commissioned by the end of March 2024 will be exempted from the requirement of procuring solar PV modules from ALMM.

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