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Renewable Energy  
8 February 2017

India’s solar sector set to soar

India's solar capacity is expected to grow by 9GW in 2017, according to cleantech consultancy, Mercom Capital Group Llc.

India's recent 750MW solar auction, has attracted bids from 20 global project developers, with a cumulative capacity of 7.5GW, Climate Action reported.

According to media, the Rewa solar park, in the Madhya Pradesh district, will be developed in 3 phases of 250MW each, covering a total of 1,500 hectares.

The first phase is expected to start in July this year with the full project to be complete within six months.

Solar sector: interested bidders

Of the 20 bidders, four have submitted to develop all three sections of the project, including ReNew Power (one of India’s leading renewable energy developers and backed by Goldman Sachs) and Adani Group (operator of India’s largest solar power project), Climate Action reported.

"Indian industrial firms Hero Future Energies and Mahindra Renewables both submitted bids to develop 500MW.

"Several Indian and global companies submitted bids to develop 250MW of capacity each, including Acme Solar, Orange Renewables, Torrent Power, GDF Suez, RattanIndia Power, and Azure Power Canadian Solar," Climate Action said.

Adding that "nearly a third of the planned capacity has already been allocated to the Delhi Rail Metro Corporation (DMRC), who have agreed to procure at least 121 million kWh of electricity every year from the first phase of the project."

The solar park will be financed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), after signing an agreement with the government of the state of Madhya Pradesh earlier this year, media noted.

Renewable plans

In November last year, a report released by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), Financing India’s Clean Energy Transition, said that the country is in a position to install over 10GW of renewables annually from 2017, as large-scale renewables, rooftop solar and off-grid sectors show significant growth.

According to the report, total annual investments in utility-scale projects crossed the $10 billion mark last year.

“The Indian government’s ‘175GW renewables by 2022′ target includes 135GW of utility-scale projects. This implies that cumulative capacity would have to increase more than three times between 2016 and 2022, from 39GW in 2015 to 135GW, requiring investment of nearly $100 billion (an average $14 billion/year),” BNEF said in a statement at the time.

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