India: Solar developers in Gujarat get extension

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After this extended deadline though, above-market rates will no longer be handed out. The original deadline was December 31, 2011. Penalties of INR30,000 (US$750) per day per MW would have been charged for missing the deadline.

Gujarat was the first state in India to start banking in on the sun and encouraging investment in the state. Gujarat got quickly involved in the solar sector by agreeing to provide sites, infrastructure and rapid approval of projects in its designated site. The state power regulator is to pay INR15 (US$0.28) per kWh for 12 years to PV plants that meet the extended deadline. Thereafter, the rate will fall according to the draft discussion paper on Gujarat Electricity Regulatory Commission’s (GERC) website.

In the pipelines were more than 900 MW of projects to be developed by end of 2011. Petitions were however filed by a multitude of companies to the GERC as the hearing schedules on the GERC website reveals. There are developers who have managed to complete their projects but those seeking extensions have had delays.

Whether this deadline of January 28 can be met by companies rushing to complete remains in question and whether they will then face a fine or if GERC will further extend the deadline remains to be seen.