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Home News Power Sector News Gujarat plans solar park scheme to promote solar energy

Gujarat plans solar park scheme to promote solar energy

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Solar parkSoon after the apex state-owned electricity company Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (GUVNL) signed the PPAs with 26 solar power project developers for 365 MW, the government of Gujarat is gearing up for yet another round of long-term green power purchase. The department of energy and petrochemicals will soon unveil Solar Park Scheme to facilitate the interested investors in solar power project.

It may be mentioned here that GUVNL's PPAs are expected to bring in investments worth Rs 5,500 crore by December 2011 under the Solar Power Policy 2009 with a target to install 500 MW by 2014. Armed with Solar Park Scheme following the enthusiastic response from the investors in signing solar power purchase agreements recently, the department is now learnt to have set even bigger target.

Government of Gujarat's principal secretary, energy department, DJ Pandian could not be reached for his comments. However, it is learnt that the department has already started communicating with the potential buyers. He also stated the government has earmarked necessary land to accommodate solar power projects.

According to the renewed framework for capacity allocation, developer opting for solar photovoltaic platform will be given maximum of allocation 25 MW while investor opting for solar thermal technology will be given maximum allocation of 50 MW. Project developer will have to choose between the private land and government land under Solar Park Scheme.

A senior government official revealed that the solar power project developers would not be allocated land other than that of in the Solar Park. In order to prevent developers from speculations, the department will not allow investor any equity dilution for first five years. The project developer can sell its stake only to the technical partner. Even after equity dilution, the investor will have to retain 51% stake.

The Gujarat State Regulatory Commission is the first state electricity regulator in the country to have fixed tariff for solar power. And GUVNL is the first state utility to have signed record PPAs for solar power. In August 2009, the government assigned 716 MW of generation capacity to 34 developers from Indian and overseas and GUVNL has so far inked PPAs for 365 MW.

Gujarat had witnessed unprecedented enthusiasm in committing investments in solar power projects during Vibrant Gujarat Investors' Summit 2009 following the announcement of Solar Power Policy in January. During the summit, 45 project developers promised investments worth Rs 61,019 crore for 3275 MW of solar power projects.

Source- Times of India


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