India aims to become a hub for cutting-edge solar manufacturing

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Covid-19 pandemic has had an enormous impact on the global economy. As governments set out for economic revival, their recovery plans must be geared towards greening the infrastructure. 

After the 2008-09 financial crisis, green measures accounted for around 16% of the total stimulus measures globally. Governments have to be even more ambitious and decisive towards clean investments to recover from the Covid-19 impact and to battle the impending threat of global warming. International co-operation and leveraging each other’s strength is crucial in these times of distress. 

With a growing and gargantuan appetite for energy, India has a unique role to play in building back a better world.

The opportunity

Solar deployment has been the flagship green growth story of the last decade, and this would be instrumental in stimulating growth and building a climate-resilient world. India has the third-largest solar capacity installed globally and has set an ambitious renewable energy target of ‘450 GW by 2030,’ including 300 GW from solar. 

Solar PV is expected to expand globally from the current annual capacity of 100 GW to 3,000 GW by 2030. 

In many ways, stakeholders who make the right set of decisions now will drive this revolution and create value beyond the company level in terms of ensuring energy security and independence from supply-chain disruptions because of concentrated value chains.

The primary factor behind the rise of solar deployment is the continuous adoption of innovations to reduce solar module prices. Hence, solar PV manufacturing is one of the strategic sectors announced by the Indian government as part of the post-Covid AtmaNirbhar Bharat (Self-reliant India) recovery initiative. 

Efforts are underway to make India a global hub for solar PV manufacturing, and local and international firms are making significant Giga-factory announcements. The Indian government is also coming up with innovative initiatives to promote cutting-edge solar manufacturing in India.

“We are convinced that PV technology improvements will exceed general market expectations and be the key anchor towards reducing solar deployment costs. India, with its huge market and relevant manufacturing advantages, aspires to be the giga-scale manufacturing destination for the breakthrough PV technologies across the value chain,” quipped Amitabh Kant, Chief Executive Officer of the government think-tank NITI Aayog.

To catalyze cutting-edge PV manufacturing in India, NITI Aayog, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE), and Invest India are together organizing a global symposium named India PV Edge 2020 on October 6, 2020, from 5:00 PM – 8:40 PM IST. It is the perfect platform for global cutting-edge technology providers, equipment makers, and PV champions to present their technologies to the Indian stakeholders who are drawing up their PV manufacturing plans. The participating companies would also have the opportunity to hear from the Indian policymakers involved in drawing up manufacturing schemes. Around 60 prominent Indian and global CEOs are slated to attend the event.

Amitesh Kumar Sinha, Joint Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, said, “In addition to the global technology presentation sessions, an investors’ roundtable with global investors like International Finance Corporation, Softbank, Brookfield, and some of the world’s largest solar developers is scheduled to deliberate on the ways to mobilize affordable capital into global scale PV manufacturing. We would like to invite all the cutting-edge technology companies and solar manufacturing executives to attend the symposium to take part in the world’s largest renewable energy expansion program.”

Cutting-edge giga-scale solar manufacturing stands on three pillars: Disruptive PV chemistries, manufacturing by custom-engineered advanced production equipment, and utilization of innovative bill-of-material (BOM) components like special glasses and coatings. Companies from all these domains are invited to present and engage the Indian industry in the symposium, catalyzing the momentum for further discussions and collaborations.

“India is today one of the top foreign direct investment (FDI) destinations in the world. With unprecedented improvements in ease of doing business, global innovation rankings, and focus and commitment to intellectual property rights, combined with affordable labour and long-term market visibility, India is acknowledged as the ideal manufacturing destination. As a consequence, we are seeing the top global champions of the PV sector setting up their manufacturing operations in India and using it as a hub not only for the Indian demand but also to export and meet the global requirements,” said Deepak Bagla, MD and CEO, Invest India.

India’s Nationally Determined Contribution document under the Paris Agreement in 2015 called for extraordinary vision, leadership, compassion, and wisdom to combat climate change. India PV Edge 2020 is one small step towards that ambition.

Global stakeholders interested in presenting at the symposium may please write to pvedge2020@gmail.com

Those who are interested in attending the symposium may register at: https://www.investindia.gov.in/pv-edge-2020-registration

 

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