2019 Begins with a Sharp Decline in Solar Auction Activity

While 6.5 GW of solar capacity was tendered, only 135 MW was auctioned in January


Auction activity was extremely anemic in January with only 135 MW of solar capacity auctioned, a steep decline compared to over 2 GW of capacity that was auctioned in the previous month.

In January 2018, about 6.5 GW of solar projects were tendered which was nearly half of the capacity tendered in the December 2018 according to Mercom’s India Solar Tender Tracker. Year-over-year, the capacity tendered in January 2019 is about 1 GW more than the capacity tendered in January 2018.

According to the tender trajectory issued by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), approximately 30 GW are expected to be tendered in FY 2018-19. So far, over 46 GW have already been tendered. While these announcements are positive for the industry, the markets must wait to see if these tenders will turn into auctions.

2019 Begins with a Sharp Decline in Solar Auction Activity

Here is a quick recap of the major tenders and auctions that took place in the month of January 2019:

Major Tenders

The Solar Energy Corporation of India Ltd. (SECIissued the tender for 3 GW of ISTS-connected solar capacity linked with 1.5 GW of manufacturing. The minimum capacity for bidding would be 1,000 MW of solar project capacity linked with 500 MW of solar manufacturing. The maximum tariff payable to the project developer is fixed at ₹2.75 (~$0.039)/ kWh for 25 years.

SECI also issued a tender for 1,200 MW of ISTS-connected solar projects to be developed across the country. The upper tariff ceiling is ₹2.65 (~$0.038)/kWh for this tender.

Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) has issued a Request for Selection for the purchase of 1,000 MW of power from grid-connected solar photovoltaic power projects located in Dholera Solar Park (phase V).

You can also read about all the gigawatt solar tenders issued through the year 2018 by clicking here.

Major Auctions

Think Energy Partners (TEPSOL) quoted a tariff of ₹2.91 (~$0.041)/kWh to develop 80 MW of solar projects in the auction conducted by Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL). Shapoorji Pallonji Infrastructure Capital Company (SP Infra) won 20 MW but did not disclose the tariff.

Delhi’s Indraprastha Power Generation Co. Ltd. (IPGCLauctioned 35 MW rooftop solar capacity. Shimato Enterprises quoted ₹47,000 (~$658.66)/kW for rooftop solar projects with capacity above 100 kW (without elevation) and Claro Energy quoted ₹54,000 (~$756.76)/kW for capacity between 10 kW and up to 100 kW (with elevation of 3 meters).

Some previous auctions were also cancelled in January 2019.

GUVNL scrapped the auction for 700 MW of grid-connected solar photovoltaic projects in the state. It was auctioned in  December 2018, and lowest tariff of ₹2.84 (~$0.040)/kWh was quoted by SB energy.

The Grid Corporation of Odisha (GRIDCO) canceled 125 MW out of its auction conducted for 200 MW of grid-connected solar projects. The GRIDCO has now signed a 25-year PPA to develop the remaining 75 MWs with Aditya Birla Renewables. It had quoted ₹2.79 (~$0.0406)/kWh to develop 75 MW of solar capacity.

Subscribe to Mercom India Solar Tender Tracker to keep yourself updated with the tenders and auctions as and when they are announced.

Nitin is a staff reporter at Mercomindia.com and writes on renewable energy and related sectors. Prior to Mercom, Nitin has worked for CNN IBN, India News, Agricultural Spectrum and Bureaucracy Today. He received his bachelor’s degree in Journalism & Communication from Manipal Institute of Communication at Manipal University and Master’s degree in International Relations from Jindal School of International Affairs. More articles from Nitin Kabeer