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Government of India has very ambitious plans and targets for solar power generation capacity enhancement in coming years

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In Conversation with Mr.Manish Gupta Director Insolation Energy Pvt. Ltd. 

1)Let’s begin with a glimpse of your company’s presence and offerings in India?

Insolation Energy’s fully automated 60 MWp plant in Jaipur Rajasthan manufactures the full range poly-crystalline and mono-crystalline solar modules, right from 40Wp to 350Wp, modules in both 4 busbars and 5 busbars made from indigenous or imported solar cell, as per the Customer’s requirements are available.

2)What have been some of the recent developments at your organisation?

The fully automated manufacturing plant using the latest manufacturing technology was commissioned in April, 2017. In a short period of a few months the Company’s products have established their credentials. A testimony to the same is the acceptance of Insolation Energy solar modules by various EPC developers, the largest and arguably the toughest Customer as far the quality is concerned among the Solar Power Developers in India. We have installed 2 Mwp of solar modules manufactured by Insolation Energy in our brand name INA are working at a single location in Dist. Ujjain, M.P. since June, 2017.

3)Tell us a bit about the recent technology advancements in your sector?

While no new breakthrough or disruptive technology has become commercially viable in the last couple of years, there has been a continuous increase in conversion efficiency of solar cells year after year leading to higher peak power from same size of solar modules. An emphasis on cost of solar cells, which account for over 50% of the modules cost have lead to better slicing techniques for cutting silicon ingots for making wafers. This has resulted in thinner wafers thereby reducing the cost of cells and modules.

4)What are your growth plans for the Indian market? What are the milestones you wish to achieve by the end of this fiscal?

After our current production capacity is fully utilized subject to the Government acting on the issues being faced by the indigenous solar modules manufacturing industry we are thinking in terms of a 100% expansion. By the end of this fiscal we hope to achieve sales of over 40MWp modules.

5)What have been the latest trends in demand for your products & services in India? Where do you see the next demand growth coming from?

Given a choice Solar power EPC Contractors prefer to import the modules from China and Taiwan rather than buying the same from local manufacturers. This is on account of cheaper imports from these countries because of dumping by them at rates below cost. Investigations are being carried out by the Directorate General of Anti-Dumping and Allied Duties and we expect a favourable outcome.

Government of India has very ambitious plans and targets for solar power generation capacity enhancement in coming years and the solar industry in India will be hard pressed to meet those targets.

6)Anything else you would like to add for our readers.

Besides the issue of dumping mentioned before, the current GST structure has created an inverse tax structure for solar module manufacturers, whereby which the input GST is higher than the GST on solar modules. With no timely refunds of excess GST (Input GST – Output GST), the industry is facing a working capital crises, which is becoming more and more acute month by month as refund amount accumulates. Further since import duty on solar modules is zero, Importers of solar modules have an advantage since the import does not have inverse tax structure. The cost of increased working capital combined with dumping has caused an existential crises for solar modules manufacturing industry and if these issues are not addressed soon, many of the solar modules manufacturing plants will face shutdowns, which is contrary to Make in India policy of the Government. Further the industry today provides direct employment to over 50,000 personnel and indirect employment to a much larger number, who will become unemployed.

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