Highlights of Curtain-Raiser of 3rd RE-INVEST Summit

The curtain-raiser for the third edition of Re-Invest saw some announcements made by the MNRE Minister and Secretary.

The curtain-raiser of Re-Invest 2019 had MNRE Minister R K Singh, MNRE Secretary Aanand Kumar and ISA chief Upendra Tripathy addressing the delegates from various countries and media to announce the event which is due to be held in Greater Noida from October 31.

The Re-Invest event will coincide with the second assembly of the International Solar Alliance ISA on 2nd November and the objective of the even will be to attract new investment to the Indian renewable sector as well as ISA countries while sharing new ideas with the member nations.

In his opening address, Secretary of MNRE Aanand Kumar spoke about the growth story of India’s RE target which increased from 100 GW to 175 GW and also informed that 80 GW has already been installed and will exceed the target.

Allaying fears of the investors present, Kumar said that the power purchase agreement (PPA) matter with Andhra Pradesh is being dealt with. “We have resilient judicial systems, the PPAs which are already signed are sacrosanct and should not be revisited unless there is a specific clause to do so in the agreement or if there is a case of malafide corruption,” he added and said that the government will protect investors’ investment and the MNRE is looking at the LCs so that the investors do not face the problem of delayed payments.

He also pointed out that there is an opportunity to attract additional $35 billion dollars into the renewable energy space and India is trying to make ‘tweaks’ and adjustments in the policy to smoothen the path.

India has been the front runner for adoption of renewable energy in the past few years and has seen the share of RE in the electricity mix increase from a mere 5.5% in 2014-15 to 7.8% in 2017-18 and now at 10.6% in 2018-19.

According to the presentation during the curtain-raiser, 80 GW of RE has been commissioned as of June 2019, 26 GW is under implementation and 44GW is under the bidding process. The breakup stands at 30 GW of solar (out of 100 GW), 36.625 GW in wind (out of 60 GW target) and close to the finishing line is Biomass at 9.1 GW against the 10 GW target for 2022.

The MNRE s\Secretary and the Minister repeatedly emphasised that India offers one of the largest investment opportunities in the renewable space as the Government of India allows 100 percent FDI under the automatic route for projects of renewable power generation and distribution.

Minister RK Singh added that the ministry is trying to improve the country’s ease of doing business index and that element of innovation is the driving force behind India’s renewable energy dream. “This is a new sector and every year our ministry is trying something new. Starting with solar then floating solar, then hybrid, then hybrid with storage, then offshore, then to the highest solar fields of the world in Ladakh. So every year or every three months or so, we come up with a new idea,” Singh said.

He said that this event will encourage players and other stakeholders to come with new ideas and share it with the world. “RE-INVEST will provide the courage to invest in those new ideas,” Singh added.

Some announcements made during the curtain-raiser were:

  1. Another International event on the lines of RE-INVEST will soon be held and will be called Sun World.
  2. In April next year, new Tariff and non-Tariff barriers will be introduced to discourage import of solar or wind equipment.
  3. Like Safeguard duty, new tariffs will be introduced on imports of RE technologies to protect manufacturing industries in India.
  4. The government will be announcing a new policy on LI-ion batteries to incentivise the storage sector, to help create and cater the demand from EVs and grid balancing.
  5. Only BIS and government-approved modules will be allowed in the Indian market from next fiscal.
  6. Storage will become a part of future tenders of solar and wind respectively.

The 2nd Global RE-INVEST, was held from 2-5 October, 2018 and was aimed at accelerating the worldwide effort to scale up renewable energy and connect the global investment community with Indian energy stakeholders. The 45 in-depth sessions featuring 220 speakers over the 3 days of the conference saw animated exchanges on various topics which brainstormed on expanding India’s RE market in the face of aggressive global competition.

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