Azure Power of India, just recently partnered with SunEdison to jointly develop and construct a 15 Megawatt (MW) photovoltaic solar power plant in Gujarat. As part of the arrangement, SunEdison will supply monitoring technologies at cost to Azure for projects up to 25 MW.
Azure Power also has to its credit the first privately commissioned the megawatt scale solar PV project in Punjab (2MW), which was India’s first privately operated, utility-scale, solar power plant.
Given this background, they seem to have embarked on an ambitious plan of 100MW of solar based capacity according to recent news reports. The Gujarat project is expected to be commissioned by November 2011. With an average cost of about 15 Crore per megawatt the total capex is expected to be about 15 billion rupees in the next three years during which Azure intends to carry out these projects. The company is well capitalized having recently raised $10 million from World Bank arm International Finance Corp in March.
The company probably needs to execute PPA’s with different states based on the respective state policy and tariff for their new expansion projects given their three year time line as it is highly unlikely that their planned capacity would be allotted to them under the first phase of JNNSM.
The challenge in this area is the guarded approach of MNRE where the funding requirements and arrangements for Phase II will be determined after a review of progress achieved at the end of the 11th Plan and an analysis of the efficacy of the model adopted for capacity building of utility-scale solar power. Interesting to also note that not many states apart from Gujarat, Rajasthan, West Bengal and a few others have announced their Solar policy.