MNRE announces auction of 21 GW solar and wind capacity by March 2018

‪Buoyed by the success of reverse auction of renewables, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has announced auction of up to 21 GW solar and wind capacities by March 2018.

The ministry will put on the block 3-4 GW wind power capacities during third and fourth rounds by March 2018. Each round will be of 1.5-2 GW each, said Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister R K Singh during a media interaction here today.

The government has already auctioned 2 GW wind capacities so for in first and second rounds this year. It has also decided to put for bidding 10 GW wind capacities each in 2018 -19 and 2019-20 to meet the target of 60 GW by 2022. At present, wind power installed capacity is 32 GW.

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As far as solar auction is concerned, the govt is looking at 17 GW capacities by March 2018. So far, 3.6 GW solar capacities have been auctioned. To meet the milestone of 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022, the Centre will go in for auction of 30 GW solar capacities each in 2018-19 and 2019-20. The Solar Energy Corporation of India will be the nodal agency for most of the auctions.

Singh added: “(We) will think about imposing Customs duty on solar equipment once we develop our domestic manufacturing capacity.”

Wind power tariff had dropped sharply to an all-time low of Rs 2.64 per unit during the second auction by the SECI for 1 GW projects in October. Solar power has seen a similar play where the tariff had dropped to a record low of Rs 2.44 per unit in a tariff-driven bidding earlier this year.

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The power minister asserted that India will easily achieve 200 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 against the targeted 175 GW. The competitive wind and solar tariff is seen as a big boost for India’s ambitious target of achieving 175 GW of renewable energy by 2022.