A Mercom India Research report has stated India added 438 MW of solar capacity in the third quarter (July-Sept) of the calendar year 2020, which is a 114% increase compared to 205 MW installed in the previous quarter.
With this, solar installations in the first nine months (Jan-Sept) of 2020 totaled 1.73 GW, a 68% decline compared to 5.48 GW added in the same period of 2019. Cumulative installed solar capacity stood at approximately 37.4 GW at the end of Q3 2020.
Year-on-year, Q3 2020 solar installations were down by 80% compared to 2,177 MW added in Q3 2019.
Large-scale installations totaled 283 MW compared to 120 MW in the previous quarter. YoY, large-scale installation levels decreased by 85% compared to 1,932 MW installed in Q3 2019.
Rooftop solar installations accounted for 155 MW in Q3 2020, an increase of 82% compared to 85 MW installed in Q2 2020. YoY, rooftop installations declined 37% compared to the 245 MW added in Q3 2019.
The commercial and industrial (C&I) segment accounted for a 95% share of the Indian solar rooftop market in Q3 2020, the report said, adding that C&I customers switched to solar to cut down their operational costs as the Covid pandemic impacted their businesses.
“The solar industry in India is glad to see the back of 2020, which will end up as one of the worst years for solar in India as COVID-19 took a heavy toll on the industry. However, the market is almost back on its feet, and the mood is upbeat as the industry heads to 2021—one of the best years forecasted for the sector,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group.
Mercom India Research forecasts India to add approximately 3.3 GW of new solar capacity in 2020 as most of the projects scheduled for commissioning in the second half of 2020 were moved to the first half of 2021.
According to the report, India still has a robust large-scale solar project development pipeline of 44.7 GW, with another 34.6 GW of projects tendered and pending auction at the end of Q3 2020.
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