MNRE to Set Up a Project Development Cell to Attract Investment in Renewables
- The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has set up a Project Development Cell (PDC) to attract more investments into the sector that will help meet its 175 GW target for green energy.
- Industry experts said the new body might have been created in the wake of tensions with China, which supplies the bulk of the solar energy equipment used in Indian Projects.
- The cell’s main purpose is to create projects that have all prior approvals for investors to adopt them. The approvals include detailed reports and readily available land for allocation for these projects. The PDC will also identify and deal with any issues that could hinder the progress of any potential investments in the future.
- The ministry said it had set up a foreign direct investment cell this month for “curbing opportunistic takeovers/acquisitions of Indian companies due to current Covid-19 pandemic”.
- Currently, the renewable generation capacity stands at around 90 GW, according to consultancy firm Bridge to India. According to its estimate, India will be able to progress to only 115 GW in the next two years, much lower than its intended target. “This is going to be a long haul and will entail comprehensive policy measures on improving critical infrastructure, educational standards, labour reforms, making domestic industry competitive, etc,” said Vinay Rustagi, managing director, BTI.
- “The government will have to walk the tightrope on meeting its renewable growth aspirations and gaining self-sufficiency in manufacturing,” he said, adding that any further imposition of duties or trade barriers would jeopardise short-term growth prospects.
- Sumant Sinha, managing director of Renew Power, told ET: “A concerted effort by renewable energy companies and the government can help the industry add capacity rapidly and meet the ambitious renewable energy targets.”
- Headed by joint secretary of MNRE Amitesh Kumar Sinha, PDC also has MNRE director Ruchin Gupta and officers of the Grid Solar Power Division among its members. The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) has also been told to nominate some officials from the Invest India initiative to this body.
- In recent years, India has been trying to reduce its dependence on China in this sector, highlighted by the reduction in imports over the years. In 2019-20, the imports stood at $1,179.89 million. This was lower than $1,694.04 million in 2018-19, $3,418.96 million in 2017-18 and $2,817.34 in 2016-17, Union minister RK Singh had earlier told Parliament.
About Ministry of New & Renewable Energy–
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is a ministry of the Government of India that is mainly responsible for research and development, intellectual property protection, and international cooperation, promotion, and coordination in renewable energy sources such as wind power, small hydro, biogas, and solar power.
- Founded – 1992
- Headquarters – New Delhi
- Minister of State (Independent Charge)- Raj Kumar Singh
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