Through the CPSU Scheme Phase-II, India is trying to promote locally manufactured solar cells and modules while encouraging the government machinery to become solar power producers. MNRE has devised an important role for electricity distribution companies and outlined details in a new notice it published. Pictured is a 7.52 MW rooftop solar power plant in Amritsar, Punjab. (Photo Credit: MNRE)
- MNRE has issued directives for the implementation of 12 GW CPSU Scheme Phase-II for use of locally manufactured solar cells and modules
- For the next 4 years (2019-20 to 2021-22), 4 GW will be annually tendered under the scheme
- Maximum tariff payable under the scheme for power generated by government entities should not exceed INR 3.50 ($0.051) per kWh
- Discoms will be expected to facilitate open access for the power generated by government entities and also for sale to other government entities
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The Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has come out with details about the CPSU Phase-II Scheme for 12 GW of solar power capacity to be procured for government entities through locally produced solar cells and modules. It has also explained the role of electricity distribution companies (discoms).
A budget of INR 85.8 billion ($1.2 billion) was approved for the scheme by the Indian government in February 2019 with the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) as the implementing agency (see India To Develop 12 GW Solar PV With Local Modules). SECI has tendered 2 GW of capacity under the scheme and issued a notice for inviting another tender for 1 GW solar, while the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) has launched a 1 GW tender.
According to the MNRE, annually 4 GW will be tendered during FY 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 each. The entire capacity will be set up over a 4-year period from 2019-20 to 2022-23. The government is offering viability gap funding (VGF) of INR 7 million ($0.1 million) per MW, which will be up for bidding.
The maximum tariff for using the power generated under the scheme by government entities should not exceed INR 3.50 ($0.051) per kWh. Allocation of the capacity tendered will be done on a bucket filling basis based on the lowest VGF requirement.
As for discoms, the government expects them to facilitate ‘open access’ to government producers for use of solar power they generate under the scheme or intending to supply the same to other identified government entities through open access. Discoms can also bring in capex upfront and set up the plants on their own or through EPC contractors.
Detailed directions by MNRE are available on the ministry’s website.