India’s NTPC tendering for up to 1GW of solar projects, 3GW tender expected in February

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Successful bidders will have to perform EPC and O&M services on the solar projects. Image: NTPC

NTPC Renewable Energy (NTPC REL), the renewables arm of Indian state-owned power giant NTPC, has invited bids for balance of system (BOS) packages with land anywhere in India for 1000MW worth of projects within the Interstate Transmission System (ISTS) connected solar projects programme.

Chosen contractors will need to identify, acquire and completely transfer ownership of the land to NTPC REL as well as identifying and arranging grid connections to an ISTS substation near to the site.

The projects are to be ground mounted PV systems and include tracking technology. They will have a minimum capacity of 50MW and a maximum of 600MW to be quoted by a single bidder (increasing by multiples of 10MW).

Contractors will have to take on all engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) work required for the development of the project, while NTPC REL will supply the solar modules “as owner issued material by NTPC REL to BOS contactor at site”.

Selected bidders will also have to perform testing, operations and maintenance (O&M) as well as providing consumables and spare parts for a “period of three years from the date of commissioning”. Full details of the tender can be found via this link.

Furthermore, NTPC REL is expected to announce a tender for 3GW of renewable energy projects with a storage component in February this year, according to local media reports by the Press Trust of India (PTI), citing an unnamed senior official.

Investment in the 3GW capacity is expected to be around INR150 billion (US$2 billion), according to reports.

“The NREL has decided to float a global tender or RFP (request for proposal) for a 3GW renewable energy project (such as solar and wind) with battery energy storage system in the next two months (by February 2022). This entails an investment of about INR15,000 crore,” the senior official is quoted as saying by PTI.

NTPC has targeted 60GW of renewables by 2032, which will make up 45% of its 130GW installed capacity from all fuels by that date.

Currently, it has a renewable portfolio of around 3,850MW – 970MW projects are under construction and 2,880MW having been won but in different stages of development.

In July last year, NTPC REL was given approval by India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) to build a 4.75GW solar project in Gujarat, India, which NTCP REL said will be India’s largest solar plant to date.

In June, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) said India’s solar share will rise to 31% of its energy mix by 2040, compared with just 4% today. Coal is expected to fall from 68% of the energy mix to 34% over the same period.

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