The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs has approved a plan for projects to be enabled by public bodies in the hope that avoiding competitive procurement will enable it to circumvent WTO rules related to import parity.
The president of India has sanctioned setting up of 14 MW grid-connected solar PV projects with aggregate battery storage capacity of 42 MWh for Jammu & Kashmir under Prime Minister Development Package (PMDP)-2015 . The projects would be set up during 2019-20 and 2020-21, and include 7 MW solar projects with battery storage of 21 MWh each in Leh and Kargil at different locations. These would be implemented in developer mode, at a fixed tariff of Rs 2 per unit, with viability gap funding support.
The interim budget has provided Rs 3,004.90 crore for solar projects development (including both grid-interactive and off-grid and decentralized) in financial year 2019-20, which is just 1 per cent increase over the estimated expenditure of Rs 2,969 crore this fiscal, according to reports.
For the purchase, the government of Tamil Nadu is seeking a loan from German state-owned development bank KfW, at an interest rate of 2%, according to reports.
A proposed investment in railways and roads offers an opportunity to harness solar for commercial vehicles and public transport. However, the 2019 federal budget does not address the industry’s call for varied financing options for solar projects or a plea to treat consumers’ solar borrowings as home loans.
To encourage Make In India, the Indian government has slashed the customs duty on electric vehicle (EV) parts and components to 10-15%. Earlier, EV parts and components imported for assembly in India attracted duties of between 15 and 30%. The move will eventually make EVs cheaper and encourage their adoption in India.
The President of India has sanctioned implementation of viability gap funding for setting up of 1 GW grid-connected solar PV power projects in North Eastern states including Sikkim. The funding has been approved as a subset of the existing scheme for setting up of 5 GW grid connected solar PV power projects with viability gap funding under Batch IV Phase II of Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.
The Renewable Energy Project Development Office is tendering seven large-scale IPP solar projects. The exercise is part of Round 2 of the Saudi National Renewable program, which is expected to allocate almost 2.2 GW of PV capacity this year.
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