India added 4,765MW solar capacity in first half of 2017: report
Mumbai: The Indian solar market added 1,869MW capacity in April-June quarter, taking the installations to 4,765MW during H1 of 2017, a recent survey said.
According to a study conducted by Mercom India Research, the total capacity added in the first half (January-June 2017) of this year has surpassed the total capacity addition in 2016, which stood at 4,313MW and is likely to reach 10.5GW by the end-2017. Large-scale solar installations totalled 1,639MW in Q2 2017 and made up 4,290MW while rooftop installations accounted for 230MW, taking the total to 475 MW.
“The Indian solar market had its best first half and is on pace to have its best year. However, uncertainty around GST rates, utilities renegotiating to get better rates, and the recently initiated anti-dumping case has stalled momentum in the sector and could have a significant negative effect on installations in 2018,” Mercom Capital Group CEO and co-founder Raj Prabhu said.
He further said there is still a lot of confusion and ambiguity surrounding the goods and services tax (GST), which is also a concern for the sector. “Initially, a rate of 5% was announced for all solar components, which was then clarified to 5% only for solar modules and 18% or more for other components.
“The most recent update is that the ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE) is pushing for a 5% rate, though nothing is official yet,” Prabhu added. The second quarter also saw the lowest ever tariff of Rs2.44 per unit in the recently conducted 500MW Bhadla Phase-III Solar Park auction. Most utilities now want a similarly low tariff, which has led to delays in PPA signings, tenders, and auctions, the report said.
“Most projects under construction will not be affected, but new tender and auction activity has stalled and most developers are taking a pessimistic view of the recent developments,” Mercom Communications India managing director Priya Sanjay said.