Giving domestic solar manufacturers a leg-up
The government’s decision to hold separate auctions for solar projects that will exclusively use domestically manufactured modules (with imported cells), has huge potential to develop local manufacturing. Imported modules are still 8-10 per cent cheaper than domestic modules and creating a separate portfolio for projects based on domestic modules can help reduce that gap. The WTO’s misplaced assessment of the Domestic Content Requirement (DCR) policy created a major roadblock, leading the government to recommend that Central public sector undertakings set up plants using domestically manufactured modules. However, despite encouraging announcements, many projects based on domestic modules have yet to see the light of day.