New Delhi: Power tariffs remained low in one of India’s largest wind capacity auctions conducted by the state-run Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), which ended on Thursday evening, a person aware of the development said.

Bidders quoted wind power tariffs as low as Rs2.51 per unit for 2 gigawatts (GW) of wind power contracts, the person said.

In the last wind auction conducted by SECI, bidders had quoted wind tariffs as low as Rs2.44 per unit for wind power contracts in February.

According to information reviewed by Mint, Srijan Energy Systems Pvt Ltd, Actis-promoted Sprng Energy Pvt Ltd, BLP Energy Pvt Ltd, Betam Wind Energy Pvt Ltd, Inox Wind Infrastructure Services Ltd and Adani Green Energy (MP) Ltd bid Rs2.51 per kilowatt hour (kWh) each to win contracts for 250 megawatts (MW), 300MW, 285MW, 200MW, 100MW, and 300MW, respectively. Mytrah Energy (India) Pvt Ltd, and Renew Wind Energy (TN) Pvt Ltd bid Rs2.52 per unit to win contracts for 300MW, and 265MW, respectively.

The aggressive bids in the latest auction come at a time when concerns have been expressed over some states looking to renege on their offtake commitments for projects awarded at a comparatively higher tariff.

Spokespersons for Srijan Energy Systems, Sprng Energy, BLP Energy, Betam Wind Energy, Inox Wind Infrastructure Services, Adani Green Energy, Mytrah Energy, and Renew Wind Energy could not be contacted immediately for comments.

These tariffs are lower than the average rate of power generated by coal-fuelled projects of India’s largest power generation utility, NTPC Ltd, at Rs3.20 per unit. The price gap between electricity generated from thermal, solar and wind projects has been bridged as costs of solar modules and wind turbine generators declined by 80% and 20%, respectively, over the past five years.

The latest auction underscores steady and sustained investor interest in wind energy projects as costs of turbine generators decline amid a favourable policy environment. Wind power tariffs had plummeted to a record low Rs2.43 per kWh at an auction conducted by state-run Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd in December, beating the record low solar tariff of Rs2.44 per unit registered in May.

India has lined up an ambitious plan to award 23GW wind power contracts by March 2020. While 100GW of the government’s targeted renewable energy capacity is to come from solar projects by 2022, 60GW is expected to be generated from wind power plants.

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