NTPC, SolarArise winners in auction for plants at Shajapur solar park

Rewa solar plant in India

NTPC Renewable Energy and SolarArise are the winners during the auction for 450 MW of solar plants at the Shajapur solar park in Madhya Pradesh.

NTPC Renewable Energy has emerged the winner for 325 mega-watt (MW) of solar capacities in the auction.

The company quoted the lowest tariff of Rs 2.35/unit for 105 MW and Rs 2.33/unit for another 220 MW solar capacity.

SolarArise, which is backed by funds managed by Kotak Mahindra, European Investment Bank and UK-based ThomasLloyd Group, has won the remaining 125 MW capacity against a tariff of Rs 2.34/unit.

State-run Rewa Ultra Mega Solar (RUMSL) shortlisted as many as 15 bidders to participate in the auction, Financial Express reported.

The project will supply as much as 25 percent solar power to the Indian Railways across seven states.

“Rather than forcing unwilling discoms to buy renewables, we should facilitate institutional consumers to procure solar power,” Manu Srivastava, principal secretary, Madhya Pradesh government, told FE. Srivastava was, till recently, in-charge of RUMSL and was instrumental in conducting the Shajapur solar park auction.

Developers are moving towards individual state tenders, which offer ready solar power offtake agreements, though they come at the risk of not receiving payments on time, JM Financial noted.

Traditionally, solar auctions conducted by central government agencies such as Seci have been more attractive to developers, owing to higher payment security. However, after much lower prices discovered under recent auctions, discoms had developed cold feet on buying power from central government agency projects at tariffs discovered under auctions, leaving large capacity of Seci projects currently without buyers.