Minister for New and Renewable Energy Farooq Abdullah on Wedenesday inaugurated Solairedirect Energy’s first project in India — a 5.6 MW solar park under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM).

Solairedirect Energy is a unit of Paris-based Solairedirect Group.

The solar park, located near Phalodi in Rajasthan, was commissioned on February 24, 2013, in accordance with the schedules agreed with the Indian authorities and will generate 9,000 MWh (megawatt hours) per annum, enough to power 20,000 Indian households.

"We are showing that solar power can make a serious contribution in addressing this country's pressing energy needs with equipment manufactured in India," Theirry Lepercq, Chairman, Solairedirect Group said at the company's event here.

Solairedirect has operations in France, India, South Africa, Chile, Thailand, China and the US.

On the occasion, Mr. Abdullah said the Indian solar industry, which is facing stiff competition from western and Chinese manufacturers, needs to match the quality of products from these manufacturers.

He warned that the protection given to them in the solar mission may be reviewed if they do not come up with quality products.

"We have put local content in the JNNSM. Local content was basic need so that local industry could survive. But if local industry can not produce a good product...if they not meet the requirements that we need in India, this local content is going to go," he said.

Currently, the local content in the solar plants is 75 per cent against the imported content "but next year the government may have to review it," he added.