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Solar
NEW DELHI: India will double the target for energy to be generated from solar parks by 2020, a top government official said, as roof-top installations progress slower than anticipated and U.S. company SunEdison’s projects are threatened by its bankruptcy. The solar parks are sought after by companies because the Indian government acquires land for the installations and sets up transmission lines, major attractions in a country notorious for red tape and public opposition to land transfers.
Debt-heavy SunEdison was one of the first companies to be drawn into the programme to encourage solar use, bidding aggressively to win a 500 megawatt (MW) project in Andhra Pradesh state in India’s south last November. But after its bankruptcy, SunEdison has been forced to initiate stake-sale talks with companies like Adani Group and Finland’s Fortum Oyj for funds, according to sources. “We are adding 25 more solar parks to create a buffer for exigencies like SunEdison,” Upendra Tripathy, secretary at the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, told Reuters on Monday. “Solar parks are a hit with companies. A lot of them are interested.” Tripathy declined to name any companies. But the new generation target of 40,000 megawatts for solar parks was likely to be approved by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet in two months, he said in an interview in his office.

Pashupathy Gopalan, president of SunEdison Asia Pacific – which focuses mainly on India – did not immediately respond to calls for comment. He has previously said the company would stick to its India growth plans.  Analysts said it was doubtful any rival would pick up the Andhra Pradesh project at the aggressive power prices promised by SunEdison. Once the fastest growing renewable energy developer in the United States, SunEdison beat out 29 other bidders for the solar park with a record-low tariff of 4.63 rupees per kilowatt-hour. Japan’s Softbank Corp, Taiwan’s Foxconn and India’s Bharti Enterprises have pledged to invest a total of about $20 billion in India’s renewable sector.
Global solar giants like First Solar Inc, Trina Solar Ltd and Fortum are also expanding their presence. Modi wants India’s solar capacity to jump nearly 30 times from 2014/15’s levels to 100 gigawatts by 2020. Last month India secured a loan of more than $1 billion from the World Bank for its ambitious solar programme. Total investment needed for the solar goal is around $89 billion, according the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. India wants renewable energy, excluding hydro-electricity, to contribute 8 percent of the energy mix by 2022, up from 5.7 percent early this year.

Source :
The Economic Times, 18/07/2016

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/industry/energy/power/government-doubles-down-on-solar-parks-after-sunedison-setback/articleshow/53264363.cms
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Solar
NEW DELHI: Mercom Capital Group today said corporate funding into the solar sector in April-June quarter fell to $ 1.7 billion, a 41 per cent drop compared to the $ 2.8 billion raised in Jan-March period of 2016.

Mercom Capital Group, LLC, a global clean energy communications and consulting firm, released its report on funding and merger and acquisition (M&A) activity for the solar sector in the second quarter of 2016.

Total corporate funding, including  including venture capital funding, public market and debt financing into the solar sector in Q2 2016 fell to $ 1.7 billion this quarter, a 41 per cent drop compared to the $ 2.8 billion raised in Q1 2016, it said.

Mercom Capital further said that the year-over-year total corporate funding was down significantly compared to $ 5.9 billion in the second quarter (April-June) of last year.

“The solar industry continues to experience weakness in terms of financing activity, and corporate funding in Q2 2016 was at its lowest level in three years,” CEO and Co-Founder of Mercom Capital Group Raj Prabhu said in a statement.

Global solar VC funding (including private equity) saw a large decline this quarter with $ 174 million in 16 deals compared to $ 406 million in 23 deals in Q1 2016.

Year-over-year (YoY) VC numbers were slightly better compared to Q2 2015 with $ 142 million in 24 deals.

Solar downstream companies raised the most (64 per cent) VC funding in Q2 2016 with $ 112 million in seven deals. A large part of the total came from the $ 100 million raised by Silicon Ranch from private equity firm Partners Group.

Other VC deals this quarter included the $ 20 million raised by Tigo Energy, 1366 Technologies’ $ 15 million raise, and the $ 12.5 million raised by Sol Voltaics. A total of 21 VC investors participated in funding deals.

Solar public market financing in Q2 2016 came to $ 179 million in four deals compared to $ 94 million in four deals in the first quarter of 2016 and $ 2.3 billion in 12 deals in Q2 2015.

According to the report, Tata Power Renewable Energy (TPREL), a Tata Power subsidiary and a renewable energy project developer, acquired Welspun Renewables Energy’s (WREPL) 1,140 MW renewable energy project pipeline for $ 1.38 billion.

CLP India, a subsidiary of Hong Kong based CLP Group, bought a 49 per cent stake in Suzlon Energy’s 100 MW solar project in Veltoor, Telangana, with an option of acquiring the 51 per cent stake balance in the future.

Amplus Energy Solutions (Amplus Solar), an Indian solar installer and a portfolio company of I Squared Capital, acquired SunEdison’s 7 MW rooftop solar project portfolio in India.The projects are spread across the states of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Delhi.

Source : Economic times, 11th July 2016,
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/53161355.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst
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Solar

The announcement by World Bank president Jim Yong Kim of over $1 billion for India’s solar energy initiatives has come as a major boost to the Andhra Pradesh power utilities.

The power utilities had planned to set up solar power projects in Anantapur, Kadapa and Kurnool districts with an aggregate capacity of 4,000 MW.


Land for the projects was identified in the three districts and the process for its alienation had already begun. A joint venture company of the State and Central Governments and the A.P. Solar Power Corporation Limited had already been floated as a special purpose vehicle for monitoring the progress of the projects.

The utilities, however, appear to be in no hurry to scout for assistance proposed by the World Bank as they would be anyway benefited, if not directly, from the announcement made by the Bank. “We have adopted a different model for the solar power projects and may not go for the Bank’s funding in the immediate future,” a senior official said.

According to officials, the utilities would allot land for the power projects along with basic infrastructure like connectivity and other facilities to the selected developers.

The developers would, in turn, be asked to pay an upfront amount calculated on the basis of the location and the land costs. “The value for the infrastructure in Kurnool, for instance, has been calculated at Rs.40 lakh per MW which the developer will have to pay as the upfront cost,” the official told The Hindu.
The developer, in turn, would factor in this amount and prepare the tariff proposals, the official said, adding that though a proposal was mooted initially to approach lending agencies, it was subsequently put off after the Central Government announced incentives for promotion of renewable energy projects.
Upfront charges
The upfront charges would be in addition to Rs. 20 lakh per MW grant provided by the Central Government for promoting solar energy projects.
Given the grant announced by the Centre, the State would stand to secure at least Rs.800 crore from the Centre for the 4,000 MW installed capacity planned.
Senior officials said the State would anyway stand to benefit from the announcement as the money would be routed through the Central agencies, the Power Finance Corporation and the Rural Electrification Corporation. “We can approach these agencies as and when required,” the official said.
 

Source : The Hindu, 16/07/16 http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/world-bank-aid-for-solar-projects-a-big-boost-to-ap/article8857749.ece

 

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Energy Power, Solar
Solar energy capacity in India could nearly double to 18 gigawatt (GW) this calendar year as large projects get commissioned, despite the short-term hurdles of power curtailment and weak tendering in some states, according to sector experts and power producers.

India had a total of 9 GW of solar capacity, including rooftop projects, as of December. During 2016, the country added about 4 GW of solar capacity—the fastest pace till date. A large number of projects are expected to be completed in the current year.

During 2017, the solar sector is likely to add close to 9 GW of capacity—taking its overall capacity to 18 GW and the country into the league of nations such as China, the US and Japan in terms of solar capacity, according to consultancy Mercom Capital Group Llc.

A total of about 14.2 GW of solar projects are currently under development and tenders for about 6.3 GW are still to be auctioned, Mercom Capital said in a 4 January report.

Mumbai: Solar energy capacity in India could nearly double to 18 gigawatt (GW) this calendar year as large projects get commissioned, despite the short-term hurdles of power curtailment and weak tendering in some states, according to sector experts and power producers.

India had a total of 9 GW of solar capacity, including rooftop projects, as of December. During 2016, the country added about 4 GW of solar capacity—the fastest pace till date. A large number of projects are expected to be completed in the current year.

During 2017, the solar sector is likely to add close to 9 GW of capacity—taking its overall capacity to 18 GW and the country into the league of nations such as China, the US and Japan in terms of solar capacity, according to consultancy Mercom Capital Group Llc.

A total of about 14.2 GW of solar projects are currently under development and tenders for about 6.3 GW are still to be auctioned, Mercom Capital said in a 4 January report.

Bridge to India, a renewable energy-focused consultancy, expects India’s solar market to grow by 90% in 2017 and reach about 18 GW in total capacity. It expects the country to add a total of 8.8 GW of solar capacity in 2017, including about 1.1 GW of rooftop solar installations.

The sector is beginning to see the actual effects of the ambitious target adopted by the government, said Vinay Rustagi, managing director, Bridge to India Energy Pvt. Ltd. “The large capacity addition this year is purely a case of how timelines work for these projects. Because the government was formed in 2014 and they announced the new target in 2015 and the bulk of the large tenders started coming out toward the end of 2015. So these are the projects which will start getting implemented and commissioned in 2017.” Rustagi, however, said the expected capacity addition is much lower than the government’s own target of 12GW for fiscal 2017 and 15GW for fiscal 2018 and also lower than what the tendering pipeline suggests.

India has a target of setting up 100 GW of solar and 60 GW of wind energy capacity by 2022. The growing energy sector requires $250 billion in investments to reach this target

A cause of worry for the sector has been several instances of state power distribution utilities (discoms) unplugging their generating capacity from the grid and delaying both payments and the signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) with renewable power producers.

To add to this, project auctions have slowed over the past three months. According to industry statistics, government agencies auctioned only about 1,300 megawatt (MW) of the planned tenders for 3,700 MW during the September-December period.

“There is a very clear laid-out path in terms of achieving the 100 GW of solar capacity. There were a spate of tenders, which came up in earlier part of last year until September, then there was a lull for two-three months, but tenders have picked up again and there are a lot of bids currently lined up. We are very confident that this growth will continue,” said Ravi Seth, chief financial officer, ReNew Power Ventures Pvt. Ltd, one of the largest renewable energy producers.

Incomplete infrastructure at solar parks in India has been hurting the development of some large-scale solar projects. A sharp fall in solar module prices, however, has helped renewable energy producers, who have won solar projects at aggressive tariffs. Despite these hurdles, a large number of overseas investors including pension funds and infrastructure-focused funds have committed sizeable investments in the sector.

On Thursday, World Bank arm International Finance Corp. said it bought an equity stake worth $125 million in Hero Future Energies, the renewable energy arm of Hero Group. “There are significant headwinds in terms of transmission and evacuation issues that could threaten the pace of growth,” said Raj Prabhu, chief executive and co-founder of Mercom Capital.

Source: Livemint, 06/01/2017

http://www.livemint.com/Industry/DaBUAGSAWbD4ObK5XxyxzJ/Indias-solar-capacity-may-double-to-18-GW-this-year.html
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Uncategorized
New Delhi: The first general assembly of the International Solar Alliance will be held in India this October. The historic event is expected to coincide with the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, signalling that New Delhi would employ the first treaty-based international government organization in India as a foreign policy tool.

As part of India’s strategy to cement its leadership among developing countries, the marque event is expected to be attended by representatives of 65 countries which are signatories to the framework agreement. The general assembly follows International Solar Alliance’s founding conference, co-hosted by India and France, in New Delhi in March.

“Of the 65 who have signed the International Solar Alliance, 35 countries have ratified it. It takes time as it goes to their respective Parliaments for approval. The first general assembly will be a big event,” said one person aware of the development, requesting anonymity.

Other prominent intergovernmental organizations in the energy sector include the Vienna-based Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) and Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA).

Speaking at a press conference earlier this month, power minister Raj Kumar Singh had said that the ministers from the 65 countries will be attending the first general assembly of the International Solar Alliance. India has taken a lead in this and the other countries have recognized it, he added.

The general assembly will also witness the election of the office-bearers of the solar alliance of countries that was mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the India-Africa Summit in Delhi in October 2015. Besides, it will also provide a platform for the member-countries and investors to court and seek opportunities.

India has been looking at ways to leverage International Solar Alliance, which includes an ambitious outreach programme by reaching out to chief executives of Fortune 500 companies and starting a Solar Nobel prize, Mint had reported on 9 August, 2017.

International Solar Alliance’s mission is to undertake joint efforts required to reduce the cost of finance and the cost of technology, mobilize more than $1,000 billion of investments needed by 2030 for massive deployment of solar energy, and pave the way for future technologies. “There will be a process of engagement,” said the person quoted above.

The International Solar Alliance has been working on a $300-billion risk mitigation fund as part of a strategy to create a sustainable financing architecture for solar projects worldwide. The fund will be used to insure solar power projects against risks such as default in payment by electricity procurers, foreign exchange fluctuations and regime change. This, in turn, will help attract investors to the space.

While queries emailed to India’s ministry of external affairs on Thursday evening remained unanswered, a spokesperson for ministry of new and renewable energy told Mint that the newspaper’ queries have been referred to International Solar Alliance.

“We will let you know the dates and rest of the details once we have official word in place,” an International Solar Alliance spokesperson said in an emailed response.

It was India and France who front-ended the attempts to set up International Solar Alliance and launched it on the first day of the United Nations conference on climate change held in Paris in November 2015. While initially, International Solar Alliance envisaged 121 sunshine countries situated between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn as its members, it was later announced that the membership of the body will be thrown open to all countries that want to join, with no criteria such as duration of sunlight and geographical location.

Source : Uttpal Bhaskar, Live Mint, 18th June 2018

 https://www.livemint.com/Industry/jappC5gsKWiZV7QJULfJuL/India-leveraging-Solar-Alliance-meeting-for-foreign-policy.html
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