- The World Bank has approved an additional grant of $22.93 million to support the growth of grid connected rooftop PV capacity in India
- As part of the grant, there will be knowledge sharing, training and capacity building programs for all stakeholders
- The ultimate beneficiaries of this grant will be solar PV developers and end-users for commercial and industrial PV systems
- The State Bank of India will on-lend this grant to the solar PV developers and end-users who wish to invest in commercial and industrial rooftop PV systems
- With this additional grant, the World Bank Board has committed $915 million in solar rooftop developments
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The World Bank has approved a grant of $22.93 million to support the growth of rooftop PV in India. This is in addition to the $625 million it had earlier approved in May 2016 (see World Bank Signs Loan Agreement With India).
This additional grant is being given to further enhance the installed capacity of the Grid Connected Rooftop PV (GRPV) Program. It is also aimed at strengthening the capacity of relevant institutions involved in the process.
India is aiming to have 40 GW of GRPV by 2022, but as of now the rooftop volume is only little over 1,000 MW (see India Crosses 1 GW PV Rooftop Capacity). Rooftop PV hasn’t picked up pace as fast as the utility scale PV owing to ‘the lack of adequate financing, unfamiliar technology and low consumer awareness’.
The World Bank Group had appointed the State Bank of India (SBI) as the official implementing agency for the $625 million facility. With the new grant, SBI will be able to lend to ‘riskier categories of GRPV customers’ as non-banking financial institutions (NBFC) and SMEs to finance and install GRPV. The nationalized bank is using the World Bank funds to on-lend to solar PV developers and end-users for commercial and industrial rooftop PV systems.
The additional grant of $22.93 million comes as part of the group’s Global Environment Facility (GEF). With this, the World Bank Board has committed $915 million in solar rooftop developments.
The GFE grant comes as a package that includes knowledge support for electricity distribution companies, training for state nodal agencies, learning and knowledge sharing programs for policy makers and regulators to develop regulatory frameworks. At the same time, there will also be technical training for investment bankers, technical and knowledge capacity building programs for project developers and SMEs. All these will be guided by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the World Bank.
Simon Stolp. Lead Energy Specialist of the World Bank and one of the task Team Leaders for the program, said, “The knowledge and advisory support being made available through the GEF grant complements the financial support to the parent program. The overall Program of rooftop solar financing has just become effective, so we intend that this grant will be utilized quickly, to help build the capacity of utilities to implement solar rooftop projects, ensure smooth implementation of GRPV regulations, and help SMEs and NBFCs to access debt for rooftop projects.”