New Delhi: During the calendar year (CY) 2021, India added 1.7 GW of rooftop solar, the highest ever recorded in a calendar year. The installations were up 210 percent compared to the CY 2020, according to Mercom India Research’s newly released Mercom India Rooftop Solar Market Report Q4 and Annual 2021.
According to the report, India added 402 megawatts (MW) of rooftop solar in the fourth quarter (Q4) of CY 2021, a 10 percent drop quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) compared to 448 MW installed in Q3 2021. However, rooftop solar installations in Q4 2021 were up 41 percent year-over-year (YoY). In Q4 2021, rooftop solar accounted for 15 percent of total solar installations in the country.
In CY 2021, the residential and commercial segment accounted for 35% and 33% of installed rooftop solar capacity, respectively. Industrial rooftop solar installations constituted 26%, and the remaining 6% was from the government segment.
“The rooftop solar market in India had its best year, largely due to the pent-up demand from 2020, which experienced a severe decline due to COVID-19. Certainty around net metering regulation helped along with demand from consumers across all segments – residential, commercial, and Industrial. Increase in component costs will dent demand in 2022, but we still expect positive growth this year,” said Mercom Capital Group’s CEO Raj Prabhu.
According to the report, at the end of Q4 2021, cumulative rooftop solar installations reached over 7 GW. Installations could have been higher if not for price increases in components, commodities, and raw materials. The increase in the rate of goods and services tax (GST) was also a big blow for installers.
The average cost of a rooftop solar system increased by 14.75 percent compared to Q4 2020, according to the report. Installers had to increase prices in 2021 to match the 12 percent GST hike and combat materials cost increases.
In 2021, over 1 GW of rooftop solar tenders were issued, a 56 percent increase YoY. The Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) contributed to 27% of announced tenders and distribution companies in states like Maharashtra, Jharkhand, West Bengal, and Karnataka, accounted for 29 percent.
According to the report, distribution companies issued empanelment tenders in Kerala, Punjab, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Haryana, West Bengal, Tripura, and Karnataka under Phase-II of MNRE’s rooftop solar program during CY 2021.
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