EQ in Exclusive Conversation With Mr. Vineet Tyagi, Head Sales & Marketing – Insolation Energy
1. How is the rise in raw materials prices of modules impacting the Indian Manufacturers?
The industry is passing through a very tough time ever since the start of covid pandemic. We have been witnessing disruptions in raw material sourcing, supply chain management and availability of workforce. Further the fear of intermittent lockdowns is adding to the woes.
Hence we are seeing an upward trend in the prices of the raw material. This has a negative effect on our bottom-line. The module manufacturers are finding it difficult to to raise the prices as the market is not responding to the price rise. The domestic manufacturers are operating on wafer thin margins and are finding it difficult to reinvest in technology and expansions. We have already seen some of the small manufacturer’s winding up in recent times.
2. How do you see the market after the expiry of Safe Guard Duty ?
The SGD announced by the Govt of India three years back expired on 29th July 21. The MNRE has issued a notification proposing BCD on Solar cells and panels effective April 22. This effectively means there is a time gap of eight months between SGD & BCD.
In the absence of the import barriers we will see a rush of cheap imports from China & other countries leading to the loss of precious foreign exchange. The domestic industry is staring at an uncertain future because of this policy vaccum.
Already the impact is being seen in the rise of solar cell prices by Chinese manufacturers in the last one week. Untill now only the big projects were using the imported modules and now with nil SGD the rooftop market will also prefer cheap imported modules. Effectively if we see this is like a double edge sword wherein one side we have high input costs and on other side we have to compete with low priced imports.
3. What kind of modules are demanded by your customers? Which technology will rule the solar market in the coming years?
We are selling a mix of both poly as well as mono perc modules. Currently our maximum selling products are poly modules. However recently we are seeing a spurt in the demand for mono perc modules. In fact the gap between mono perc and poly modules is narrowing down. We believe that in future mono perc will be the most preferred choice. We also foresee a good demand for bifacial modules in the coming years. We have been seeing this trend around the globe and India too is going to adapt the latest technologies.
4. How much modules have you supplied to India till now? What is the target and expectation in this year and next year?
In the last Financial Year (2020-21) we have supplied approx 100+ MW of modules. This year our target is to supply 150 MW and further 250 MW in the next year.
5. The scope of PM-KUSUM scheme has been expanded by the government. Do you feel it will help domestic module manufacturers in expanding their market reach?
MNRE has expanded the scope of Pradhan Mantri-Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthan Mahabhiyan (PM-KUSUM) scheme to enable greater solar energy generation in the farm sector. The ministry has amended the guidelines of the scheme based on the learning from its implementation during the past years.
The Union Budget 2020 has laid a major emphasis on use of solar energy for farming under the ambitious PM-KUSUM scheme with Finance Minister extending the scheme’s implementation with new targets. These kinds of initiatives will definitely give boost to domestic manufacturing sector. We strongly believe that domestic manufacturers are fully capable of meeting this demand through the supply of quality products.
6. As still the significant market share has been enjoyed by overseas players, what will be your strategy to expand the market presence?
As of now we were focusing on the Domestic Market through capacity expansion, now we are also upgrading and incorporating new equipments for technology up gradation to expand the market presence.
We have one of the best testing equipments for quality assurance and product up-gradation. Along with this, we regularly organize the Product and Process Training for our staff by internal and external agencies.
As with international trends the Indian market is also seeing a trend shift from poly to mono perc modules . Keeping an eye on this our new expansion plans are already braced up for new technological introductions. Further we are already exploring export opportunities and are in touch with few overseas clients for this. We are planning to enter into mid East Asia, Africa & selected European countries.