Highly ambitious annual solar power capacity addition targets have been announced by the Indian Ministry of New & Renewable Energy.
With a target to have an operational solar power capacity of 100 GW by March 2022, the Indian government has announced annual capacity addition targets for the next few years. The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) plans to add 15 GW and 16 GW solar power capacity in financial year 2017-18 and 2018-19, respectively.
In the current financial year the government targets addition of 12 GW solar power capacity. If this target is achieved India’s installed solar power capacity will cross 17 GW by the end of March 2017. By early March this year over 5.7 GW of solar power capacity was operational in India.
The ministry has planned addition of 17 GW in financial year 2019-20 and 17.5 GW each in 2020-21 and 2021-22.
A massive amount of funding will be required to achieve these targets. Thankfully, several Indian as well as international banks have already sanctioned large sums of funding for solar power projects. The ministry recently announced that Indian banks and non-banking financial institutions sanctioned Rs 71,200 crore (over $10 billion) as debt finance to renewable energy projects since February 2015.
Most of this finance has been approved for solar power projects. Of the total amount sanctioned, Rs 29,500 crore have already been disbursed. Banks and financial institutions had committed to provide finance for 76,352 MW of renewable energy capacity. The total amount committed by the 40 participants entities was Rs 382,255 crore.
India is also in talks with development banks like the Asian Development Bank, International Finance Corporation, KfW, the Japan International Cooperation Agency, and the New Development Bank to access cheap debt finance for setting up solar power projects.