Government Cuts Solar Module Makers’ Fees to Enlist as Approved Suppliers
The Ministry raised ALMM enlistment validity to four years from two years
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has reduced the application and inspection fees for enlistment in the Approved List of Models and Manufacturers (ALMM). The application fees have been reduced by 80% compared to the earlier structure.
The Ministry also increased the ALMM enlistment validity from two years to four years.
Commenting on the changes, B.S. Bhalla, Secretary, MNRE, said that the changes in the ALMM for photovoltaic modules would enhance the ease of doing business and help ramp up the domestic production of solar photovoltaic modules for catering to the current and future demand.
For solar module and cell manufacturers having a total installed capacity less than or equal to 50 MW/year, the application fee has been set as ₹500 (~$6.08)/MW of the total installed production capacity of the applicant.
If the application consists of multiple models, an additional fee of 1% of the application fee for the first model for every additional model will be applicable.
For solar modules and cell manufacturers with a total installed capacity of more than 50 MW/year, an application fee of ₹1,000 (~$12.16)/MW of the total installed capacity of solar modules and cells will apply. For multiple models, the applicable fee will increase by 1% for every additional model.
Further, if the applicant is already enlisted in the ALMM list, then the application fee for every new model will be 10% of the application fee for the first model and 1% of the application fee for every new model.
The enlistment of additional models will not have any effect on the validity of the original enlistment.
There has been a substantial reduction in the inspection fee, with a reduction in some instances being as high as 70%.
The Ministry has provided an exemption from factory inspection in the case of enlistment of additional models in the ALMM list, which are similar to those already enlisted by the applicant but having a lower voltage.
But factory inspection will be done if the wattage of models proposed to be enlisted is higher than the wattage of already enlisted models.
Also, the Ministry has stated that applications received before the issuance of this order and pending inspection can be withdrawn and submitted as a fresh one, for which the inspection fee mentioned above will be applicable.
However, if the manufacturers withdraw their applications prior to factory inspection, the inspection fee will be fully refunded without any interest.
For applications submitted after the issuance of this order, the manufacturer can withdraw their applications before factory inspection, with a refund of 90% of the application fee.
A provisional ALMM enlistment will be granted within seven days of BIS certification, and a time limit of two months will be provided for factory inspection and final enlistment, failing which the provisional enlistment will be deemed the final enlistment.
The Ministry has also introduced category-wise minimum module efficiency thresholds for enlistment in ALMM. For utility-scale projects, the minimum module efficiency required to be eligible for enlistment has been set as 20%. For rooftop and solar pumping, the module efficiency should be 19.5%, and for solar lighting, it should be 19%.
The ALMM order has been kept in abeyance for one financial year, i.e., FY 2023-24. Thus, projects commissioned by March 31, 2024, will be exempted from the requirement of procuring solar modules from ALMM.
In March this year, MNRE modified the ALMM guidelines and provided exceptions to broaden the qualification criteria for modules produced under agreements between an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) and a brand owner.
Subscribe to our real-time Regulatory Updates to ensure you never miss any critical updates from the renewable energy industry.