Buoyed by the response to bids invited for setting up solar power projects in the state, the government has now extended the last date for bidding to February 15 from the earlier February 7. According to energy department sources, AP Transco has already received nearly 30 bids as well as close to half a dozen enquiries from foreign players.
According to an energy department official, who did not wish to be identified, "Many of the investors had requested us to postpone the date so that they can participate in the bids. We have received around five to six enquiries from foreign companies also. We expect around 150 bids to come up by the end of the period."
"So far around 30% of the enquiries have come from non-AP companies while the rest of them are from state players," he added. On the extension of the bidding date, another source said, "The e-procurement platform which is being used for bidding is new to most of the participant. We had received several requests to postpone the final date as it would give them more time to understand the platform and participate in the process." The state government in January had called for a tariff-based bidding for 1,000 MW capacities of solar projects to be set up in the state and it had also notified a list of sub stations across the state which could host renewable electricity. Mrutyunjay Sahoo, principal secretary, state energy department, said the department had till last week already received applications for 880MW and the process of scrutinising the applications was on.
According to analysts, AP's solar policy was a good bet and projects under the policy were expected to be bankable resulting in leading and experienced players bidding for it.
AP is a hot destination for solar players as the state enjoys around 300 sunny days in a year and there is an availability of widespread electric grid network facilitating easy connectivity for the projects.