Indian government plans ` 110 billion aid package to boost local solar cell manufacturing
The Indian government plans to boost solar module manufacturing by providing financial support of about ` 110 billion (around US$ 1.8 billion) along with concessions to cut the country’s reliance on imports from China.
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy aims to provide a 30 per cent subsidy for setting up new plants and expanding the existing ones, according to a concept note posted on the ministry’s website. The heavy equipment required to set up projects will also be exempt from custom duty, according to the scheme to be operated by the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA).
The Central government targets boosting installed solar power capacity to 100GW by 2022. But 84 per cent of India’s solar cell demand is met by imports from China, according to a report authored by renewable energy consultancy ‘Bridge to India’. Photovoltaic modules account for more than half the costs of a solar project.
The cheaper Chinese imports have brought down solar power tariffs to a record low. The Indian Solar Manufacturers Association, however, has petitioned the government to impose an antidumping duty on inbound shipments from China.