India has a large public sector owned corporate sector which is dominated by oil companies such as IOCL, BPCL, HPCL, ONGC, etc. These are multi-billion dollar companies which are spread across the oil and gas value chain. They own a massive asset base and play a key role in the energy infrastructure of the country. However, like other government owned companies they are slow moving and bureaucratic who find it hard to play in competitive sectors. While the size of these companies makes them relatively immune from cyclical forces, they are very suspectible to structural changes.

This has already been seen in multiple other industries such as telecom where companies like BSNL, which had a huge market value are now finding it hard to pay salaries to their staff. Hobbled by government interference, a huge employee base and little in terms of innovation, they are highly vulnerable to disruptive change. BHEL which used to be a capital equipment giant is finding it hard to reinvent itself after the thermal power industry has gone into a major structural decline. With orders for its boilers and generators declining, BHEL’s stock price has continued to go down with little hope for succor. Coal India which is a virtual monopoly in the coal mining sector is another company whose future is cloudy, given that renewables are cheaper than coal power and thermal capacity is hardly increasing in India.

India’s oil companies have come out with plans to adapt to the Electric Vehicle industry but these plans are yet to be implemented. With the use of electric chargers for charging EVs, the thousands of downstream refilling stations of these companies will become redundant in the coming days. Their huge refineries will also have to change from refining crude oil to petrol and diesel, they will have to move to petrochemicals. These companies may find this very hard as the petrochemicals are highly competitive and they may find themselves driven out by private giants such as Reliance and Nayara. Their downstream investments and revenues will also see a major hit in the coming days. Their top management has their head in the sand and is not worried too much. It is pretty much the same story of what happened in telecom and capital equipment. Unless the government quickly privatizes and gets out of these companies, Indian taxpayers will see a huge hit in the coming days.

M K Surana, the chairman and managing director of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL), said electric vehicles will not be a threat to the oil industry “at least for the next ten years” as it will snatch away only a part of the “incremental demand” and “not disrupt the existing demand”.

“The main concern now (with the push for EVs) is that, is it the end game for the oil industry; we do not believe that. Does it mean that it is business as usual; the answer is no,” Surana said at a media conference on Wednesday.

Source: Hindu Business Line

The Problem for “Make in India”

India has failed to grow its manufacturing base in multiple areas, despite huge domestic demand powered by more than a billion people. This has resulted in huge imports every year mainly from China and other western countries. From high technology products to things like toys and idols, India imports it all despite having the capacity and demand to “Make in India”.

The problem lies in how policy and regulations are formed by the top echelons of the government. Strong lobby groups of private entities and foreign companies manage to influence and shape policies which are strongly against the national interest. Given that imports are cheaper especially from China, it is in the interest of the private entities to procure cheap material and equipment from China rather than buy it from domestic suppliers. In the case of high technology items, it is not possible to source from India at all. This leads to foreign suppliers becoming even bigger and more powerful, while Indian companies become small and obsolete.

Solar Energy

Image Credit: Pixabay

This has already happened in multiple industries. Despite a huge telecom market in India with more than a billion subscribers, the country imports almost all the semiconductors and equipment required from Western and Chinese firms. India has virtually no 3G or 4G technology to call its own and as the world moves to 5G technology, the country will be importing billions of dollar in equipment every year enriching the foreign suppliers. While China managed to create national champions such as Huawei and ZTE using the power of its domestic market, India has nothing to show for it. Even in telecom handsets, Chinese firms such as Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi rule the Indian market with hardly any Indian name. In the cause of cheaper costs, India has virtually destroyed the long term drivers of wealth creation.

In new technologies such as AI and machine learning, China is competing with the USA for the No.1 position with India to be seen nowhere. All the country does is provide engineers in their millions for a very cheap price to create IP for the foreign organizations, which is sold back to India. Even in renewable energy technology, India has sold itself off to the Chinese solar panel makers. In wind turbines where India had a strong industry, it is going the wrong way with strong WTG makers like Vestas and GE stealing market share from the likes of Suzlon and Inox. Unlike Japan, China, and South Korea, India does nothing to support and protect its domestic companies which are forced to fight on an uneven level playing field with strong foreign entities with much better financing and technological capabilities.

In solar energy where India is going to install 10 GW plus every year, Chinese suppliers rule the roost with more than 90% market share. Piecemeal efforts like putting a puny safeguard duty for two years has done nothing to nurture an industry which needs long-term support. Foreign controlled entities like Goldman Sachs’ Renew Power care two hoots about India’s domestic interests as they hanker for cheaper equipment from China.

Introduction

The word “Aadhaar” means “basis” in English. Aadhaar is a twelve-digit identity number for Indian residents, which was implemented by the government to provide a unique digital national identity to the citizens of the country. Aadhaar creates a digital identity to supplement the physical identity. It has been globally recognized as the world’s largest digital identity programme.

The Aadhaar scheme was initiated by the UPA regime to curb the rising number of fake accounts of fictional beneficiaries in the government’s welfare schemes for the underprivileged Indians.

The data for Aadhaar is collected by Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI), a statutory authority established by the government of India in January 2009. The Supreme Court of India ruled that Aadhaar is voluntary and not mandatory. On 24th August 2017, the Indian Supreme Court further reaffirmed the right to privacy as a fundamental right.

Nandan Nilekani, the co-founder of Infosys, was appointed by the then UPA government to manage this massive IT project. Aadhaar was launched in 2012 by the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The present-day government in India provided legislative support to the Aadhaar project in 2016.

Aadhaar’s success in India can be gauged by the fact that out of the 130 crore population in India, 119 crore citizens currently possess an Aadhaar card. The states of Delhi, Haryana, and Telangana have seen high Aadhaar adoption, while northeastern states are lagging behind.

aadhaar

Source: UIDAI

Why is the government pushing Aadhaar

Aadhaar aims at digitally empowering Indians, especially the rural population through the Aadhaar-enabled payment system. People in remote parts of the country can easily access their wages, pensions, provident funds etc. with an Aadhaar card. A massive amount of Indian taxpayers’ money has already been saved by detecting fake gas connections and ration cards.

Aadhaar was introduced to better manage bureaucratic services and provide improved governance. It provides for distribution of subsidies to the rightful beneficiaries plugging the leakages which are endemic to India’s social welfare schemes. In future, the Aadhaar card will be made mandatory to avail benefits of various government schemes and services. In addition, an Aadhaar letter provided by UIDAI will act as a valid proof to open a bank account. If you possess an Aadhaar card, you can get a passport in just 10 days. A few states are also making it compulsory to own an Aadhaar card before buying a new car (Andhra Pradesh) or a new SIM.

Another advantage of Aadhaar is the creation of formal documentation of an individual’s education and employment records, which would contribute to building a stronger Indian economy in the future.

Also, read The Rupee Remains Weak Following RBI Chief Resignation

Aadhaar Challenges

Aadhaar has faced several challenges as it solicits the collection of private information like fingerprints and iris scans of individuals. A number of citizens are skeptical about linking Aadhaar numbers with their respective bank accounts, mobile phone numbers, investment accounts etc. as it creates privacy issues. This information may be misused by the government.

Aadhaar-linked data is available with the state governments and numerous people involved in the ecosystem. This creates a valid concern about the government’s ability to protect their personal details. Despite the government assurances about the foolproof nature of the system, there have been numerous cases of hacking of databases both in the public and private domains that makes one doubtful whether the government can protect the Aadhar database.

A recent verdict by the Supreme Court has imposed restrictions on the usage of Aadhaar by private companies, citing privacy concerns. Aadhaar will continue to be used for welfare schemes for the underprivileged and is mandated to be linked with one’s PAN (permanent account number). Further, the court has also ruled the need of a proper redressal mechanism for anyone who suffers from identity theft, due to lapses on the part of UIDAI.

In the wake of the above decision private companies, especially banks and telecom companies will not be able to freely use Aadhaar numbers of their customers for e-KYC.

If a citizen has already linked his/ her Aadhaar with various services, he/ she can connect with the service providers to delink their Aadhaar.

What the common man has to say

There are opposing views regarding Aadhaar from different walks of life.

Citizens of modern India like those working in MNCs think Aadhaar to be annoying because they receive recurring reminders from banks, telecom companies, and mutual fund houses to link their accounts with their Aadhaar number. “I am concerned about the safety of my identity and accounts to be given to the world so freely” – says a friend of mine Rahul Agarwal, who is working with PwC in Gurgaon. If the linkage is not done, then there is a threat that the bank account, mobile network etc. would stop working.

A Modi believer said “I did it because of the government push and I have full trust in the Modi government. I hope it will help to strengthen the Indian economy in the future.”

People like the house help have been really thankful to the government for Aadhaar. Sheila a cook working in Gurgaon says that Aadhaar has eased her life as it is now convenient to open a bank account and send money home. She was also able to get her entry passes, to different residential societies made easily, because she possessed an Aadhaar card. She says it is was very easy to get subsidy funds for a bicycle (for her eldest daughter who goes to a government school) from the relevant authorities.

For people like Sheila who have left the comforts of their own homes and are working in cities to provide a decent living for their families back home, Aadhaar has come as a boon.

Aadhaar as compared with other social identity programs

Despite people loosely comparing Aadhaar with Social Security Number (SSN) of the US, there are huge differences between the two. The most important one being that SSN details of an individual are shared with the federal agencies and entities that store the data at an organizational level. The law prohibits its use for any commercial or promotional purposes, unlike Aadhaar which was being freely used by private and public companies in India, until the most recent verdict was passed by the apex court on September 26th, 2018. Unlike Aadhaar, which stores personal information like the biometrics, SSN does not solicit any such information and even restricts its usage. Moreover, the Social Security Number is not an identity number.

The chief economist of the World Bank has opined that India’s Aadhaar is one of the most sophisticated systems and proposes a worldwide adoption of the same. Many other emerging economies in the world are trying to implement similar identification programs. For example, Brazil and Indonesia are implementing national identification programs with biometric features,  while the Ghana card was developed to deliver public services.

Malaysia’s national identification program (MyKad card) is considered one of the most advanced programs in the world and was launched in 2001. It is proof of residency and can be used as a driving license, passport (within Malaysia) or an ATM card. The basic difference with the Indian Aadhaar card is that the Malaysian government grants freedom of choice to its citizens where to use it. According to the Indian apex court ’s recent ruling, people will have the option to opt out of the system in a few instances.

Summary

Aadhaar has been a big step forward towards achieving the vision of a “Digital India”. It aims to become the most important identity proof for Indian citizens. Digital identity is gaining traction worldwide and is being used more commonly now. One common application is the operation of smartphones with fingerprints or eyes. One of the biggest criticisms of the Aadhaar scheme is that a large amount of personal details is collected by UIDAI. However, the details collected during the creation of Aadhaar accounts like core biometrics are being secured through strong encryption. The Aadhaar ecosystem is also subject to audits from time to time. Aadhaar is one of the biggest structural reforms undertaken by the Indian government aiming at the formalization of the Indian economy.

Huawei Solar Inverters

India becomes one of the top five solar markets in the world. The country is trying to reduce its carbon footprint by installing more and more solar, wind and other renewable energy assets. The country holds a huge potential for the large foreign solar panel and inverter companies who have been eyeing to establish a big footprint in India. Talking about solar inverters in India, the country is flooded with supplies from neighboring Chinese land. According to the latest report from Bridge to India, ABB, Huawei, SunGrow and TMEIC were the largest inverter suppliers in India. These inverters have proven their forte given their excellent quality and services in India.

You can read in detail about ABB inverters here.

 

Huawei solar inverters are the second largest suppliers to the Indian market. The company has successfully carved a leading position globally as well. Huawei is the Chinese telecom giant, but has quickly become No.1 global inverter supplier by shipments for the period 2015-2017. The company offers a wide range of inverters, monitoring and communication systems, and other smart solutions.

Huawei inverters offer a smart range incorporating digital information technology, PV technology and the internet. Its smart PV solution has been used across large-scale solar plants in Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.

Types of Huawei Smart PV String Inverters

Huawei Solar Inverter Key Strengths
Huawei string inverters have a higher efficiency when compared to central inverters. They typically come with 5 years warranty and more than 20 years of lifespan. They also require less maintenance and replacement cost, and offer less downtime and system losses.
Inverters for utility scale solar applications Huawei inverters
i) SUN2000-95KTL-INH0
ii) SUN2000-70KTL-INM0
Voltage – 1100V-1500V
6 MPPTs
12 strings intelligent monitoring
Maximum efficiency 99%
iii) SUN2000-55KTL-IN-HV-D1

 

Voltage – 1500V
4 MPPTs
8 strings intelligent monitoring
Maximum efficiency 99%

Compare and buy best selling Solar Inverters in India here.

Most versatile inverters 
iv) SUN2000-43KTL-IN-C1
v) SUN2000-36KTL
Voltage – 1100V
4 MPPTs
8 strings intelligent monitoring
Maximum efficiency 98.8%
Inverters for commercial applications
vi) SUN2000-8/12KTL
Voltage – 1000V
2 MPPTs
4 strings intelligent monitoring
Maximum efficiency 98.5%
India is an important market for Huawei. The company targets at bringing more advanced and useful products to the Indian market such as FusionSolar Smart PV solutions.

Largest Solar Companies Making a Mark in Indian Solar market in 2017

At the end of 2017, India’s total solar installed capacity stood at 19,500 MW which included rooftop solar installation of 2100 MW. The year itself saw a humongous 9,200 MW solar capacity addition, increasing by 94% from that in 2016.

Let’s have a look at the major suppliers who made these numbers possible.

Canadian Solar, First Solar, and JA Solar were the largest module suppliers in India in Q4 2017, capturing a whopping 50% share of the total Indian market. First Solar moved one step up from being the third largest module supplier in 2016. Trina Solar was replaced by JA Solar that ranked fifth in 2016.

On the domestic front, Mundra Solar and Vikram Solar were the largest manufacturers by production during the quarter. Adani Solar is also expanding aggressively in the Indian module market ramping up huge production capacities.

Solar on island

Replacing ABB as the largest inverter supplier in India was Sungrow, accounting for 27% market share in India during the fourth quarter. Other large inverter suppliers were TMEIC (20% market share) and Huawei (16%). The top three inverter suppliers in India were ABB (35% Market share), TMEIC (17%) and Hitachi (16%). It is to be noted how prominent names like ABB and SMA Solar are losing leading market share positions in India. Sungrow is a large Chinese inverter company which also ranked amongst the ten largest solar inverter companies in the world in 2017. Sungrow has become very prominent in the Asia- Pacific market lately. Huawei, the Chinese telecom giant, has also made a commendable progress in the global inverter market.

India has a huge demand for central inverters because of a large number of utility-scale projects. Though central inverters are preferred for their low upfront and maintenance cost, India is also witnessing a surging demand for string inverters rising from just 1% in 2016 to ~9% in 2017. Both Sungrow and Huawei are the biggest supporters of string inverters for the utility-scale segment.

Problems related to land acquisition and transmission have remained a big headache in India. The module prices also increased by ~6% in the last quarter of 2017.

List of Solar Installers In South India

1. Harsha – Bangalore

harsha@cyancorp.co.in

Business – Solar project investment

2. Bikesh Jha – Bangalore

bikesh.jha@invendis.com

Website – www.invendis.com

Business – Solar Analytics

3. SURAJ KUMAR – Bangalore 

suraj@pnssystems.com 9916248090

Business – Solar Integrators, UPS and Inverter systems manufacturers + suppliers

4. Dr. Hidayath Ansari – Kerala 

operations@teslatronics.in

Website – www.teslatronics.in

Business – Solar Product Manufacturer

5. Vedvyas V – Hyderabad

wellstark@hotmail.com

Website – www.wellstark.com

Business – Solar EPC, Supply of Modules, Inverters, and Batteries

6. Karthik – Chennai 

Kartr18@gmail.com

Website – www.viplepc.com

Business – Solar power

7. PRASAD – Chennai 

prasad.s@viplepc.com

Business – Turnkey contractor for Solar projects

8. AMARENDRA AV – Hyderabad 

ceo.sarvanitelecom@gmail.com, ceo@sarvanitelecom.in

Website – www.sarvanitelecom.in

Business – SCADA & COMMUNICATION SOLUTIONS

9. Nagarjun – Hyderabad 

nagarjunreddy@nationsprideenergy.com

Website – www.nationspridesolar.in

Business – Solar Installations

10. Avinash Reddy – Bangalore

avinash@acrelectronics.in

Business – System Integrator for solar rooftop PV

11. Yash Dinesh Jain – Bangalore 

executive.mktg@microsunsolar.com

Website – www.microsunsolar.com

Business – Solar PV modules, Solar power packs, Solar street lights, Solar home lights

12. Shivaji – Bangalore 

aetsales5@gmail.com

Website – www.asteretech.com

Business – Solar PV Panel Manufacturing Machine

13. Bharathwaaj – Chennai

BHARATHWAAJ.J@GOGGLESENERGY.COM

Website – www.gogglesenergy.com

Business – Capex and Opex Models for building of solar plants

14. N.Saravanan – Chennai

yosworldchennai@gmail.com

Business – Rooftop System integrator for solar power plants

15. Srinivas Murthy – Bangalore

atreesolutions@outlook.com

Website – atreesolutions.com

Business – Solar Panels & Panel Mounting Structure

16. Anil Kulkarni – BAGALKOT, Karnataka

anil.solarpowerpark@engineers.com

Business – EPC and funding

17. Anjali Nambiar – Hyderabad

agandhi@radiantsolar.us

Website – www.radiantsolar.us

Business – solar module manufacturing company

18. Karunakaran – Puttur, AP

karunakaren.pss@gmail.com

Website – www.borgenergy.com

Business – Solar EPC from 1 kW to MW range

19. NARAYANAN – Chennai

solar@jove.co.in

Website – www.jove.co.in

Business – Solar power Solutions

20. S.Zahir Hussain – Trichy 

starsolarproducts@gmail.com

Website – www.starsolarproducts.com

Business – System integrator

21. Raja – Hyderabad

innowattpower@gmail.com

Business – Solar rooftop power solutions for house and commercial purpose and solar water pumps across AP