Essel Infraprojects, a part of Subhash Chandra-led Essel group, is in advanced stages of selling its 685-MW solar business to Greenko group, sources close to the development said.
The deal size could be to the tune of USD 1 billion, they added. Global private equity fund Actis and Tata Power were also in the fray along with Greenko to buy the assets of Essel. However, their deals did not go through, according to the sources.
When contacted, an Essel spokesperson told PTI, “As an infrastructure conglomerate, we keep on evaluating various opportunities. However, we would not like to comment on market speculation.”
Greenko also declined to comment on the deal.
Essel has a total portfolio of 23 projects, under various stages of development, with nearly 310 MW of operational solar power facilities, which it had bid for under the National Solar Mission and state government auctions, and another 375 MW capacity under construction.
Greenko, backed by Singapore’s GIC and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), has recently bought wind and solar energy producer Orange Renewables for an enterprise value of about USD 1 billion.
GIC and ADIA have recently invested USD 450 million more in Greenko Energy Holdings, which has over 3,200 MW of operating capacity.
In 2016, Greenko acquired SunEdison’s Indian assets at an enterprise value of USD 392 million.
India became a net exporter of electricity for the first time during the last four years and aims to achieve the target of universal household electrification by the year-end three months ahead of the original deadline, Power Minister RK Singh said on Tuesday.
In a media briefing here on the government’s achievments in the four years of NDA rule at the Centre, he also referred to the issue of stressed projects, saying efforts are underway to revive some of the non-performing assets (NPAs) in the sector.
“India became a net exporter of electricity for the first time during the last four years, and 7,203 million units were supplied to Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar in the last financial year,” Singh said.
“The government will connect every house in the country with electricity by December 2018,” he said.
In September last year, the government had launched the Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana (Saubhagya) scheme aimed to connect all households with electricity March 2019.
With 100 per cent village electrification being achieved by the end of April, the government brought ahead the Saubhagya target of powering around 4 crore households three months ahead of the original deadline.
“We added 24,000 MW power generation capacity per year compared to 4,800 MW of earlier governments,” the Minister said.
He said 100,000 MW of power generation capacity and one lakh circuit km (ckm) of inter state transmission capacity had been added in the last 4 years.
Besides, 25,000 ckm of transmission capacity were added per year, as against 3,400 ckm during previous governments.
Referring to the woes of the power sector that contributes a major chunk of the massive NPAs, or bad loans, accumulated in the Indian banking system, Singh said that “banks are coming together and drawing up schemes to salvage power assets”.
“SBI (State Bank of India) and other banks have launched a scheme called Samadhan to revive assets and 11 plants have been selected under the scheme, while some power assets are getting revived under the Shakti scheme,” he said.
On renewable energy, he said that its capacity was doubled to 70 gigawatt (GW) in four years, while the country is poised to achieve 225 GW renewable energy capacity addition by March 2022, as against the current target of 175 GW.
“India’s current capacity stands at 70 GW, we will cross the 175 GW target well before 2022. We have new schemes like offshore wind, floating solar, which will help us over-achieve the current target,” he said.
As per a ministry release, India’s energy deficit reduced from 4.2 per cent in fiscal 2013-14 to 0.7 per cent in 2017-18.
MUMBAI: India hopes to touch renewable power capacity of 225 gigawatts (GW) by March 2022, R K Singh, power minister said on Tuesday, likely breaching the 175 GW target set in 2015.
"We will cross the target of 175 GW of renewable energy before 2022," Singh said, adding bids for the entire 175 GW will be out by March 2020. India, which is a signatory to the Paris accord for cutting greenhouse gas emissions, has an installed capacity of over 70 GW, up from 34 GW in December 2014.
The ministry has not revised the target but is hopeful 225 GW will be possible at the current pace of growth, Singh said.
The country is also planning to electrify all village households by December this year, he said.
The majority of India's renewable energy comes from wind at over 34 GW, followed by solar at 21 GW. In the last four years, India's solar capacity has risen substantially from 3 GW in December 2014.