RPower gets 400 cr US Exim Bank funding for solar plant

RPower gets 400 cr US Exim Bank funding for solar plant

New Delhi: Anil Ambani-led Reliance Group firm Reliance Power has got 400 crore loan from the US Export-Import Bank for a 40 MW solar plant being set up in Rajasthan.

The company is developing the country’s largest solar photo voltaic (PV) project with 40 MW generation capacity, which is scheduled for commissioning by March, 2012.

When contacted, a Reliance Power spokesperson confirmed the sanction of the loan by the US Exim Bank, adding that the company was “fully committed to develop a large renewable energy portfolio comprising wind, solar PV and solar thermal projects."

The US Exim Bank approved the loan in their meeting on 25 August, 2011.

A long-term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for the PV project has been signed with group company Reliance Infrastructure at the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC)-approved tariff. The company has already placed equipment orders with a US supplier for the project, which will be eligible for carbon credits.

The 40 MW solar plant is the first plant in a series of solar energy projects planned by the company.

This would be followed by commissioning of another 100 MW solar plant in Rajasthan, which would be a Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) project to be commissioned by May, 2013.

The long-term PPA for the CSP project was signed with NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam Ltd (NTPC’s power trading arm) at a tariff of 11.97 per unit.

As part of its renewable energy business plans, RPower also plans to invest around 1,500 crore to develop a 200 MW wind power project at Vashpet, Maharashtra.

This would be the largest investment in wind energy in India by any power generation company at a single location. This project will be developed under a special purpose vehicle of RPower.

The project is scalable by an additional 200 MW, which would take the cumulative capacity at the project location to 400 MW.

The company already has operational wind projects with capacities of around 100 MW in the states of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

The Vashpet plant will be the largest wind power project in India, comprising 80 wind electric generators (WEGs) with a rated capacity of 2.5 MW each, which are the highest capacity wind turbines available in India.

The project is expected to be implemented in phases and the full capacity of 200 MW will be commissioned by September, 2012. RPower has entered into a long-term PPA with Reliance Infra for the electricity output at the tariff declared by the MERC, which is 5.37 per unit.

Power generated from the project will be wheeled for the Mumbai distribution business of Reliance Infra.