The Ministry of Power has released an order  which provides extension on the waiver of intra-state transmission charges and losses for transmission of electricity generated from solar and wind sources. As per the last order dated 14 June 2017, MoP had provided an extension on the waiver of transmission charges for electricity procured from solar and wind sources till 31.12.2019. This waiver has been further extended to 31 March 2022 for electricity transmitted both the sources of renewable energy.


The waiver shall be applicable for 25 years from the date of commissioning of the projects and only on those projects entering into PPAs with distribution licensees for sale of electricity for compliance of their RPO. The order also states that the waiver shall be applicable to projects awarded through competitive bidding process.


This order continues to encompass the same issues present in the previous orders. It is only applicable to solar projects from which the electricity will be sold to the DISCOMs. Secondly, it will only be on those solar projects entering PPAs for the compliance of RPO.


This is an attempt to encourage solar and wind  energy in the country, the Ministry of Power (MoP) had waived off the inter-state transmission charges and losses on the electricity generated by wind and solar sources of energy in September last year. That order has now been amended by the MoP  and as per the new order, transmission charges and losses are wavered off only on solar projects.  The MoP, after consultation with MNRE, CEA, CERC and POSOCO, has notified the following:

For generation projects based on solar resources, the waiver will be on projects commissioned till 31/12/2019. The waiver will be available till 25 years of date of commissioning of such projects and on solar  projects entering PPAs for sale of electricity to DISCOMs for compliance of RPO. The remaining of the terms and conditions remain the same as the 2016 order.

As per our analysis, this order by the MoP has a number of limitations. First of all, it is only applicable to solar projects from which the electricity will be sold to the DISCOMs. Secondly, it will only be on those solar projects entering PPAs for the compliance of RPO.

The order released in 2016 can be accessed here.


In a Business Standard article, though solar tariff rates have hit an all time low in the REWA bidding, the future of solar projects seems bleak as there are no new tenders from the big states. Tenders from SECI and NTPC are facing delays and those from Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh are getting downsized. In states like Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, the project biddings have been postponed. For the year 2016-17, only 10 GW of solar power has been awarded out of which 30% has been by the states and the rest has been from SECI and NTPC.

ApTel sets aside Tamil Nadu Solar policy

As per reports, Tamil Nadu’s ambitious solar policy, once assumed to be a game-changer for fostering solar power in the state, has been set aside by the Appellate Tribunal of Electricity (ApTel). A capacity addition of 3000 MW was envisaged under the solar policy till 2015.

“Solar Purchase Obligation (SPO)”; policy’s main driver of demand, has been confronted with a lot of criticism. Various consumer associations had approached relevant forums against such a binding mandate which required solar energy consumption to be 6% (from Jan 2014) out of total energy consumption. According to an article in The Hindu (dated July 7th 2013), Tamil Nadu Electricity Consumers Association (TECA) went to ApTel in June 2013, saying that consumers will not have the required solar energy capacity. According to submissions in the present order by the appellants, TN requires an installed solar capacity 720 MW in the year 2013 and 1500 MW in 2014, to make solar power available for compliance with SPO and RPO targets.

TANGEDCO as a respondent in the order has said that solar RPO of 0.05 % ceased from being into effect from the time SPO was introduced by the state commission.

TANGEDCO, last year, had floated tenders which has currently around 700 MW of solar projects awaiting execution of power purchase agreements. The solar power price discovered through, competitive bidding mechanism,was Rs. 6.48 per unit. Following this recent ApTel order, TANGEDCO is in a fix whether to scrap solar power purchase obligation or to buy power from solar projects and subsequently move TNERC to raise tariffs, to accommodate additional cost of buying costlier solar power.

A copy of this order can be found here.

Media Articles are available in the following links-

The Hindu Businessline

The Hindu  – (dated 6th Nov 2012)

Our relevant blogpost can be read here.

Link to Tamil Nadu’s Solar Policy 2012

Solar RECs: Investor’s perspective and feasibility study

Solar Projects are the flavour of the season. The National Solar Mission (NSM) has laid out an ambitions goal to make India the global leader in solar energy, and plans to develop capacity of 20 GW by 2020.

This analysis focuses on the impact and feasibility of Solar RECs as a mechanism to finance and operate solar energy plants. As a significant number of companies and investor consider solar energy opportunities, we present an analysis of how workable solar energy plants are under the REC mechanism.

Solar RPO are included in most state regulations

RPO regulations in each state require fulfilling a separate Solar RPO. At present the solar RPO requirement ranges from 0% to 0.5% of total electricity consumed. It is expected to go upto 3% by 2022. At the same time, a separate Solar REC will be issued to generators who meet the eligibility criterion. These Solar RECs will have a floor price of Rs 12/kwh and a forbearance price of Rs 17/kwh.

Demand for Solar RECs

Our analysis suggests that Solar RECs demand will be robust. Majority of the upcoming capacity in solar energy is either through state feed-in tariffs, or though the NSM. In either case, that capacity will not access the REC market. At the same time, there will be robust demand as every obligated entity will also need to buy Solar RECs. REConnect’s analysis suggests that 2011-12 demand of Solar power for RPO requirements will be in excess of 1,300 million units* (roughly translating into 600MW of capacity). As a result, we expect Solar RECs to sell at a high price.

*Calculated from CEA data : For a detailed analysis please contact us.

Most state regulations provide that in the event for inadequate availability of Solar RECs, the Solar RPO requirement can be fulfilled through Non-Solar RECs. Since Non-solar RECs are significantly cheaper that Solar RECs, this can present issues in the Solar RECs markets – companies may wait for the Solar REC supply to be exhausted so that they can buy non-solar RECs for compliance, and it may result in a downward pressure on Solar REC prices. More clarity is needed on the implementation of this clause is the state RPO regulations. Read more…

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