New Delhi: As India moves closer to its deadline for installing 175 GW of renewable energy (RE) projects by 2022, Union Minister RK Singh has lined up PSUs in the power and new and renewable energy sector and has directed them to enhance investment in RE projects. A meeting to discuss the action plan for enhancing investment by power sector PSUs in RE projects was chaired by Singh on September 7. Representatives from power sector PSUs like NTPC Ltd, NHPC, Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), among others, were present in the meeting. A comprehensive action plan for enhancing investment in RE projects was discussed at the meeting, an official statement released on Wednesday said.
At the meeting, it was decided that in-principle approval will be accorded to PSUs for bidding for RE power projects at the beginning of the year for a pre-determined capacity based on the strength of their balance sheet. For Miniratna PSUs, the matter of enhancing the Board of Directors' power to approve upward revision of investments will be taken up with the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE). Currently, Category-1 Miniratna PSUs can incur capital expenditure of Rs 500 crore or equal to net worth, whichever is less, without government approval. For Category-2 Miniratna PSUs, the cap stands at Rs 250 crore or 50 percent of the net worth, whichever is less.
"Proposal for reducing hurdle rate IRR for RE Sector from 10 percent to 8 percent, to be taken up with the Ministry of Finance," said the statement.
Bundling of RE projects with new or untied/high tariff hydro projects will be allowed so as to bring down the tariff of hydro power to consumers. Proposal for waiver of transmission charges for RE capacity under Flexibility Scheme will be considered and there will be no requirement for separate PPAs for RE power developed under the scheme, said the statement.
Separate guidelines will be formulated under Section 63 of The Electricity Act, 2003, for bundling scheme, for setting up RE plant on their own land or a new location.
It was decided that the MNRE will formulate a separate policy for floating solar. The ministry will also examine allowing Solar Power Park Developer/Individual Promoters to participate in tariff-based competitive bidding (TBCB) process. It will also evolve mechanism to ensure sanctity of bidding process and PPA by the state government and for rationalising high solar park charges.
"It was deliberated to allocate the offered capacity amongst CPSUs through bidding process in some form on equitable basis," the statement added.