Sri Lanka seeks bids for 60 MW of large-scale PV

Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy and the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB), which is the the country’s largest electricity provider, have issued a call for tenders for the construction of 60 PV plants with a capacity of 1 MW each on Build Own & Operate (BOO) basis.

The projects, which will be developed under phase II of the solar program PV ‘Soorya Bala Sangramaya’, will sell power to CEB under a 20-year PPA. Bids must be submitted by April 26.

The signing of the PPA must be made within 12 months of the date of issue of the letter of intent, while financial closure must be completed within six months of the signing of the PPA.

The CEB has set a price ceiling of LKR 18.37 ($0.121) per kWh for the tender.

The Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy also recently extended a loan scheme for the installation of small solar power plants on residential and commercial buildings.

Loans for the installation of new PV capacity can now be obtained from both state and private banks, and their limit has been increased from LKR 150,000 ($990) to LKR 350,000 ($2,306). Moreover, the maximum concessionary interest rate of 6% will be paid to consumers under the loan.

According to the latest statistics published by Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Energy, the country had around 28 MW of operational PV capacity installed under net-metering, and only 1.4 MW of online PV plants at the end of 2015.

The Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy is implementing the ‘Soorya Bala Sangramaya’ program (Battle for Solar Energy) in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Sustainable Energy Authority (SLSEA), Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and Sri Lanka Electricity Company (Private) Limited (LECO). The country’s government expects to add 200 MW of solar electricity to the national grid by 2020, and 1 GW by 2025 through this program.