GBI to be Reintroduced in India
The Indian Wind Industry has been facing problems in 2012 and installations have fallen off sharply as two of the most popular subsidies have been taken away by the Government in March 2012. This coupled with local factors particularly in the biggest market of Tamil Nadu has taken the sheen of the wind energy industry.
However after a huge effort at lobbying , the Government has agreed to reintroduce Generation Based Incentive (GBI) of 80 paise per unit. Note GBI is a kind of feed in tariff given to wind energy production. Instead of a fixed rate, the Government gives 80 paise to the wind farm developers as an incentive. This is over and above what he gets by selling the power to the state electricity board. Accelerated depreciation however is not going to return and seems buried for good.
Wind Energy Industry of India in 2012, finds going tough as Local bodies start to Tax Wind Turbines in Tamil Nadu
The Indian Wind Industry in 2012 is finding the going a bit difficult after a record breaking year in 2011. First the accelerated depreciation subsidy which has been around for a long time making India the 5th largest wind energy producer, has been removed. Second the GBI incentive scheme too was removed so that the Wind Energy industry depends on the Renewable Energy Certificates (REC) scheme which is quite fickle and market based. Now the Wind Energy Industry finds itself facing a new set of problems in its bastion of Tamil Nadu which accounts of almost 1/3rd of the total wind energy capacity in the country. Tangedco, the distribution utility is threatening to remove the “banking facility” of the wind energy producers which allowed them to sell power at a time when the electricity prices were high.
Problems Faced by Indian Wind Industry
Wind Power Plants in India are finding the going tough in 2012. Wind power players are also facing tactical problems like collecting of dues from the state distribution utilities. Most of the state power distribution companies are saddled with massive debt and payment to suppliers is always a perennial problem. In the case of the wind energy developers, the problem of working capital has become acute with payment delays of more than a year.
Wind Companies are also facing capital escalation of costs with the prices of materials like steel and cement showing a sharp appreciation leading to a 30-40% increase in the cost of wind farms. The rise in costs with a fall in electricity tariffs are squeezing the wind energy developers. Wind energy installations in Tamil Nadu which accounts for almost 40% of the wind capacity in India, has already dropped by a startling 70% in the first quarter of fiscal 2012. With the industrial conditions getting worse it is expected that the trend will continue and wind capacity could drop to just 1000 MW from 3000 MW last year. This would have a devastating effect across the wind equipment supply chain. Gamesa has already dropped its plan of building a wind equipment factory in China.
The wind power industry, which has been subdued in terms of capacity addition since the beginning of the year, is now charged up with the prospect of revival of the generation-based incentive scheme (GBI).
Thanks to the repeated public statements made by the Ministry for New and Renewable Energy, Dr Farooq Abdullah, that a new GBI scheme will be announced, there is a sense of renewed optimism in the industry.
“The scheme is being revived. We are working on it,” Mr Anil K Jain, Advisor, Planning Commission, told Business Line on Saturday.
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