Budget 2021: FM Sitharaman puts focus on solar energy sector

She announced a customs duty hike on solar inverters and lanterns which would have an impact on the rooftop, ground-mounted projects and distributed renewable energy sector

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget speech has put emphasis on the solar energy sector as part of the government’s larger focus on renewable energy.


She announced a customs duty hike on solar inverters and lanterns which would have an impact on the rooftop, ground-mounted projects and distributed renewable energy sector.





“To encourage solar manufacturers, we are raising duty on solar inverters from 5 per cent to 20 per cent and on solar lanterns from 5 per cent to 15 per cent,” said Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in her Budget speech in Parliament today.



She added that to build up domestic capacity, the government would notify a phased manufacturing plan for solar cells and solar panels.


Apex solar body, National Solar Energy Federation of India (NSEFI), welcomed the move for the increase of duty on inverters.


“This will not only promote indigenous manufacturing of inverters but will also lead to job creation in the sector especially impacting MSMEs. This is another step towards realising the goal of Aatmanirbhar Bharat,” Subrahmanyam Pulipaka, chief executive officer, NSEFI, told ETEnergyWorld.


Regarding duty hike on solar lanterns, he added that the announcement was a necessary step to place Indian manufacturers in a comfortable position and also to enable India in becoming a global leader in supply of solar lanterns.


According to a recent study by GOGLA and C-kinetics, India is one of the largest markets in the world for solar lanterns and has a potential to be a $300-million market for lanterns.


DRE applications are those which are powered by renewable energy and used for earning livelihoods directly such as solar lanterns, dryers, pump-sets, mini-grids, solar-powered cold storage, solar charkha, etc.


Apart from this, the Finance Minister announced fund allocation to the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) and Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA).



“To give a further boost to the non-conventional energy sector, I propose to provide an additional capital infusion of Rs 1,000 crore to SECI and Rs 1,500 crore to IREDA," she said.


According to Somesh Kumar, partner and leader, power and utilities, EY India, the enhanced outlay for the renewable energy sector through SECI and IREDA, would enable larger focus on augmenting renewable energy.


FM also proposed a comprehensive National Hydrogen Mission to be launched in 2021-22 for generating hydrogen from green power sources. Industry analysts have welcomed the move.

Source:- ET EnergyWorld


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