- SECI has terminated 150 MW capacity it had tendered in January 2017 for Bhadla Solar Park under the so-called Domestic Content Requirement (DCR) category
- 100 MW was to come up under National Solar Mission (NSM) Phase III and the remaining 50 MW under Phase IV of the Bhadla Solar Park
- Now, SECI has restored 500 MW and 250 MW in the category open for non-domestic modules for Phase III and Phase IV of the park
- The move might be a consequence of India following the WTO ruling that did not agree with India enforcing local content for its solar projects
The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) has terminated the a tender for the so-called Domestic Content Requirement (DCR) category of the Bhadla Solar Park in Rajasthan. DCR project need to use domestically made cells and modules.
For Phase III and Phase IV of the park, SECI has restored the 500 MW and 250 MW capacity tenders under the so-called Open Category, respectively. The bidders are now not bound to procure solar cells and modules manufactured locally.
In January 2017, SECI had floated two separate tenders of 100 MW under Phase III (see SECI 100 MW Tender For Bhadla Solar Park), and 50 MW under Phase IV (see 50 MW Tender For Bhadla Solar Park) for Bhadla Solar Park under DCR category. Both these projects are part of the National Solar Mission (NSM) Phase II, Batch IV.
As the agency did not explain the rationale behind the same, it is being assumed that the change pertains to India following World Trade Organization (WTO) ruling (see Final WTO Verdict In India-US Solar Dispute). India is supposed to implement the ruling by not making DCR category mandatory for its solar power projects under the NSM.
“The WTO ruling is finally hitting home as domestic manufacturers that depend on DCR projects see the market shrink. With Chinese solar module prices declining heavily over the last year it has been challenging for Indian manufacturers to compete,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group.
For Batch IV, around 200 MW capacity is yet to be auctioned under the DCR category. As per Mercom, this capacity may get canceled or be retendered under open category. SECI officials confirmed to Mercom that the agency won’t be issuing any more tenders for DCR category.