World’s largest solar bid bagged by Adani Green

Adani Green Energy Ltd has bagged the world's largest solar bid, which entails building a photovoltaic power plant of 8,000 MW and setting up a domestic solar panel manufacturing capacity of 2,000 MW, envisaging a total investment of roughly $6 billion.

Under the offering of domestic manufacturing-linked solar power projects from the state-run renewable energy agency SECI (formerly Solar Energy Corporation of India), Azure Power will also get to build a PV project of 4,000 MW and solar kit manufacturing capacity of 1,000 MW. India’s domestic solar cell manufacturing capacity currently stands at 3,300 MW and module-making capacity is 8,000 MW.

The SECI board has approved the awards under the greenshoe in the tenders for the domestic manufacturing-linked projects, which closed in November last year, at a tariff of Rs.2.92 per unit discovered through a reverse auction.

Domestic manufacturing linked projects enjoy a higher tariff ceiling of Rs.2.93 per unit against the average Rs.2.60 for general projects. So the reverse auction starts from a higher level, giving promoters fiscal headroom as the general winning rate for solar power hovers around Rs.2.50 per unit. SECI also offers PPAs (power purchase agreements) for four times the offered size in case of manufacturing-linked projects.

The company is expected to set up the facilities in Rajasthan and Gujarat. The Rajasthan government has approved the company’s proposal for setting up solar infrastructure at Jaisalmer, Bikaner, Jodhpur, Jalore and Barmer. Kutch is expected to be the preferred location in Gujarat.

The tender had attracted bids for twice the capacity on offer. This was the first oversubscription of a renewable energy capsule in nearly two years, during which auctions for solar and wind energy projects of over 10,000 MW had to be extended, postponed or retendered in the absence of a response from investors.

Market players said safeguard duty against cheap imports, largely made in China or Chinese companies in Southeast Asia that are hugely subsidised by Beijing, combined with several other measures, have enthused the bidders.

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