Economic South Asian superpower India has firmly embraced solar power. Thereby advancing the target date by five years for selling solar-generated electricity. All most importantly at the same rate as electricity generated by fossil fuel plants, from 2022 to 2017.
According to government officials, the reason for moving the date forward is plummeting tariffs in the latest solar development projects, a trend that they believe is likely to continue.
All is not yet completely sunny for India’s solar energy drive. However Kapoor noted that several solar projects benefiting under a state program offering favorable tariffs to build 20,000 megawatts of capacity have already been delayed. adding that developers may lose contracts if deadlines are missed. Thereby commenting, “Two of the projects are behind schedule. In a few months, we should have a clear picture.”
The pair of miscreants are Entegra Ltd., whose majority shareholder is MW Corp Pvt., which has yet to begin building a 10 megawatt solar-thermal plant in Rajasthan and Enterprise Business Solutions. All consequently cited for delays in an October deadline to build a 5 megawatt photovoltaic plant in Punjab.
Entegra Ltd. is disputing New Delhi’s claims of sluggish performance. Especially with its Chairman Mukul S. Kasliwal commenting that his firm faced problems raising financing for its $38 million development. However that the company expects to complete the Rajasthan facility plant by its 2013 deadline.
So he is shifting responsibility for delays to the Indian government. Because Kasliwal commented in an interview, “We haven’t started because we’re not going to do something that doesn’t make sense financially. Had we been allowed to function as an SPV (special purpose vehicle). I mean then we would’ve finished financing long ago.”
Despite the travails of Entegra Ltd and Enterprise Business Solutions, other members of India’s burgeoning solar energy community are optimistic about the government’s latest pronouncements.
Azure Power CEO Inderpreet Wadhwa, whose company has secured government contracts to establish solar projects to generate up to 35 megawatts said, “Solar has the same potential as personal computers had in 1970’s. Technology innovations and improvements in manufacturing would drive down costs further.”
Support for India’s solar ambitions comes from some heavyweight fiscal analytical groups. So Ernest and Young for example.
And that emerging market is potentially lucrative indeed. Because last year the Indian government launched its “National Solar Mission”. An effort whose objective is to establish India as a global leader in solar energy. All by creating the policy conditions for its diffusion across the country as quickly as possible.
The program’s goals are also nothing if not ambitious. Yet as the government had initially hoped to boost the nation’s solar capacity. All by the equivalent of about 18 nuclear power plants by 2022. Especially at date that’s now been brought forward by five years.
By. John C.K. Daly of Oilprice.com
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