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solar capacity by FY18-end: report

India is expected to reach 20 gigawatt (GW) of installed solar capacity by the end of the present financial year (2017-18), said a report released by the consulting firm Bridge to India (BTI) on Tuesday. According to the latest edition of India Solar Map 2017, which was released on Tuesday, India will reach a total of 20 GW of installed solar capacity by 2017-18 end. It also said that India installed 7.5 GW in the last four quarters (Q4 2016-Q3 2017) and the total utility scale solar capacity reached 16.2GW by September. Out of the 7.5 GW capacity added in this period, 57% came from three southern states—Telangana, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. With this, Telangana now ranks number one for commissioned capacity followed by Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh. 20 GW of solar power by 2022 was the original target under India’s national solar mission set by Manmohan Singh-led United Progressive Alliance government. But in 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government revised it to 100 GW by 2022. “It is a curious time for solar sector in India. We are coming off a period of exceptional growth of over 80% over last three years. But the future looks more subdued—demand for solar power is slowing down when tariffs have fallen to a low of Rs2.42/ kWh level making solar power the cheapest new source of power in India. Utility scale solar capacity addition is expected to slow down to about 5 GW per annum,” said Vinay Rustagi, managing director, BTI, while speaking on the launch of BTI’s India Solar Map 2017. He said it is expected that “investors to shift their attention to the secondary market, where some large M&A (mergers and acquisitions) transactions are in the pipeline.” Meanwhile, the report further said that seven project developers in India now have a portfolio greater than one GW (both commissioned and pipeline projects). The report also stressed that there has been a “marginal increase in the market share of Indian manufacturers” but the “Chinese suppliers continue to hold over 80% of the total market share”. 

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