The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) discovered record low tariffs of Rs 2.44 per unit during the auction for 500 MW capacity in Bhadla Phase-III Solar Park, Rajasthan, on 9 May.
Saurya Urja Company of Rajasthan, a joint venture between the Govt. of Rajasthan and IL&FS Energy Development Company is setting up the solar park. This tariff is fixed for 25 years with no escalation and the bidders have sought no VGF from the Government.
The winners are ACME Solar Holdings for 200 MW for a tariff of Rs 2.44 per unit and SBG Cleantech One for 300 MW, quoting a tariff of Rs 2.45 per unit.
Rajasthan state will consume the entire solar power. The developers — ACME Solar and SBG Cleantech One — are responsible to connect to the pooling sub-station of solar park. The developers will be paying solar park charges of Rs 45.2 lakh per megawatt towards land, connectivity (from pooling substation to state network) and other infrastructural facilities. The projects are likely to be completed in about 12-13 months.
The earlier lowest tariff of Rs. 2.62 per kWh, was discovered recently in the auction conducted by SECI for 250 MW Bhadla Phase-IV Solar Park in Rajasthan.
The fall in solar tariffs is the result of combination of factors, most important being the decision of the Government of India to cover solar power by SECI under the ambit of Tripartite Agreement for payment security against defaults by State distribution companies.
Other factors contributing are about 7-8 percent higher yield in Rajasthan due to better solar radiation conditions, drop in module prices in International market, and strengthening of Indian rupee against US dollar.
For the present bid, the bids were submitted by 24 bidders for a capacity of 5500 MW which is 11 times of the bid capacity. Bid received global response including developers from Finland, France, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Japan.