India will generate 1,000 MW of solar power by the year 2013, with financial assistance from Power Finance Corp and Rural Electrification Corp, under the government's Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.
"We would be able to generate 500 MW of solar-thermal power and another 500 MW from photovoltaic cells in the next three years," Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde and Renewable Energy Minister Farooq Abdullah said at a joint press conference on Sunday.
The Ministry of Power and Ministry of New and Renewable Energy on Sunday unveiled the guidelines for selection of New Grid Connected Solar Power Projects.
"PFC and REC would finance some of these projects," Shinde said, adding that Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) will also fund these projects.
As per the guidelines the projects should be of 5 MW or more in case they use solar photovoltaic cells in order to connect to the transmission company's substations.
NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam (NVVN) is the nodal agency for sale and purchase of power under the solar mission.
NVVN will invite expressions of interest from developers for solar photovoltaic projects under this scheme.
In order to have wider participation from solar power developers, only one application per company -- including its parent, affiliate or group company -- shall be permitted for development of a single project.
Power companies have welcomed this step by the government. "These guidelines are timely and topical and are bound to give a strong impetus to the solar industry both in terms of marketing and manufacturing perspective to achieve the solar mission target," Moser Baer India Chairman & Managing Director Deepak Puri said.
These guidelines are aimed at facilitating quick start-up of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.
Under JNNSM, the government has set a target of generating 20,000 MW of electricity by tapping solar energy.
The target would be implemented in three phases --phase I up to 2012-13, phase II from 2013-2017 and phase III from 2017-2022.
The country currently produces less than 5 MW of solar power every year.