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Phase II of solar park gets green signal

According to reports, finance minister Arun Jaitley Wednesday announced that the Centre would take up the second phase of solar park development for an additional capacity of 20,000 MW.

The first scheme for “Development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Solar Power Projects” was rolled on December 12, 2014, with a target of 20,000 MW.

According to a fact sheet issued by the MNRE on May 23, 2016, the central government — under this scheme — had granted the approvals to 33 solar parks of aggregate capacity of 20,000 MW to be set up in 21 states.

The Budget also proposed customs and excise duty cuts on raw materials used for manufacturing solar modules, biogas plants and wind turbines. For example, basic customs duty on all items of machinery required for systems “operating on biogas/bio-methane/ by-product hydrogen” has been reduced from 10 to 5 per cent, while the excise duty has been reduced from 12.5 per cent to 6 per cent.

“As expected, the 10-year tax holiday and generation-based incentives for the wind sector have been phased out. There is some rationalisation of duty structure for components used in manufacturing solar modules. But there is no big bang or material announcement,” said Vinay Rustagi, MD, Bridge to India, a market research firm.

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