Sunborne Energy has received a INR1.4 billion (US$30.6 million) loan to build its 15MW plant in Gujarat, India. The system is one of the first to secure funding from India’s initial auction for solar development permits.
State Bank of Patiala, Canara Bank, Export-Import Bank of India and State Bank of Travancore agreed to the 12-year loan and Sunborne has a nine-month grace period on payments.
Construction work has already begun and the plant is scheduled to be finished before the end of the year. Suntech has already begun delivery of the equipment.
The Indian government hopes that, through its National Solar Mission, PV will account for 20GW of its energy portfolio by 2022. However, despite awarding projects to numerous developers, obtaining financial backing has proved to be difficult, with banks expressing doubts over the fledgling sector.
Nevertheless, SunBorne’s executive director and chief financial officer, Anil Nayar, is upbeat on solar’s future on the subcontinent. “While there is enormous potential to install solar power in India, bankability and financing has been a key concern for many project developers. With Indian banks coming forward to fund solar projects, the prospect for the second phase of National Solar Mission and other State projects only look brighter, he said.”