The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco) has handed over the task of procuring wind and solar energy to the Centre’s Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) to attract better prices.
The move comes after the State power utility’s tender for procuring 500 MW each of grid-connected solar power and wind power projects did not get any response.
The solar tender had a maximum ceiling of ₹3 a unit and the wind tender had a maximum ceiling of ₹2.65 a unit. The procurement was planned through the reverse auction method, where the lowest bid is selected as the winner.
According to renewable energy consultancy firm Mercom, the tenders were cancelled after a lack of response from the developers.
The consultancy firm said prolonged payment delays to solar and wind energy developers seemed to have tarnished the reputation of Tangedco. Renewable energy players in the State have also been facing back down issues, the firm added.
“This was a long time coming. Now, it is a well-known fact that Tamil Nadu is the riskiest State to develop solar and wind projects. The move to transfer tendering responsibilities to SECI is a positive one for the developers and opens up development opportunities once again in Tamil Nadu,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO, Mercom Capital Group. Tamil Nadu’s wind tender was challenged by the Indian Wind Turbine Manufacturers’ Association (IWTMA), pointing out that the maximum tariff fixed was too high.
In its petition at the Appellate Tribunal for Electricty, the association had said that its members would not be able to recoup the return which they were entitled to for the investments made.
The IWTMA had pointed out that the price of ₹2.64 a unit, discovered in Gujarat wind energy auction, could not be equated to that of Tamil Nadu as the charges of lease of land were much higher and excessive here.