NABARD’s $100 million deal gives green signal to private solar power initiatives in India: Full details

By Elton Gomes

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), on Saturday, signed an agreement with Green Climate Fund (GCF) to infuse $100 million into a project that has been designed to unlock private sector initiatives for creation of rooftop solar power capacity across India.

The agreement was signed by Shankar A. Pande, Chief General Manager, NABARD. The deal was finalised in the presence of A.K. Mehta, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, at an event held on the sidelines of COP24, the ongoing climate change conference, in Katowice, Poland.

What is the deal?

The $250 million project, which will be executed by Tata Cleantech Capital Ltd, will receive support from the GCF through NABARD. NABARD is also the national implementing entity (NIE) for the GCF that supports the efforts of developing countries to respond to the challenge of climate change, the bank said in a statement.

India’s plans to boost solar power

Media reports from last December stated that India has plans to boost its solar module manufacturing. It plans to do this by providing Rs 11,000 crore direct financial support along with concessions to reduce reliance on imports from China.

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) aimed to provide a 30 percent subsidy for setting up new plants and expanding the existing ones. Heavy equipment required to set up projects shall also be exempt from customs duty, according to the scheme that was to be operated by Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency.

The MNRE has also drafted a set of proposals for financial and other support. “The objective is to eventually have the entire spectrum of manufacturing, from poly-silicon to modules,” the draft read, Business Standard reported.

In March 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi set an ambitious target of achieving 100 gigawatt of solar power by 2022. PM Modi made the announcement at the International Solar Alliance Summit in New Delhi.

“In India, we have started the world’s largest renewable energy expansion programme. We will generate 175 GW of electricity from renewable sources of energy by 2022, of which, 100 GW will be from solar power. We have already achieved 20 GW installed solar power,” Modi said, inaugurating the Summit that was co-hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron, BusinessLine reported.

At the summit, it was also announced that a Project Preparation Facility (PPF) has been set up by India. This facility was set up to assist India’s development partner countries towards preparation of viable projects that could be considered for financing under Lines of Credit.

Elton Gomes is a staff writer at Qrius

Climate ChangeGreen Climate FundNABARDPrivate SectorSolar Power