SoftBank-led SB Energy has shown a clear intention of entering the Indian wind energy market. The company, which is one of the largest players in India’s highly competitive solar power market, has participated in the sixth national-level wind energy tender issued by the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
SECI received bids to set up over 2.3 gigawatts of onshore wind energy capacity, against an offered capacity of just 1.2 gigawatts. This is the sixth national-level wind energy auction and the first in more than four months.
SB Energy, which has never participated in any wind energy tender in India, has proposed to set up 600 megawatts of capacity — the highest capacity bid by any participating company. It is notable that the largest capacity ever awarded to any project developer in wind energy tenders in India is 500 megawatts.
Three companies — ReNew Power, Enel Green, and EDF — have proposed to set up 300 megawatts of capacity each. Adani Green Energy and Engie placed bids for 250 megawatts each. Three other companies submitted bids for a cumulative capacity of 325 megawatts. The tender has seen significantly high participation from foreign developers compared to Indian developers. Some prominent Indian developers missing from the list of participants include Hero Future Energies, Inox Wind, and Mytrah Energy.
SECI made some changes in this tender to attract more developers. One of the most important changes is the increase in the size of the maximum bid by a single developer from 300 megawatts to 600 megawatts.
India has so far auctioned 9.8 gigawatts of wind energy capacity since the tendering regime began in February 2017. The average lowest winning bid so far is Rs 2.80/kWh (3.93¢/kWh) while the lowest bid in the last auction was Rs 2.76/kWh (3.88¢/kWh).
The sixth national-level tender was supposed to be issued in May 2018, however, due to lackluster response in the fifth auction which forced SECI to reduce the capacity offered and delay the auction by several months. Developers had bid for 1.2 gigawatt capacity against the offered capacity of 2 gigawatts in the fifth auction.
India aims to have an installed wind energy capacity of 60 gigawatts by March 2022, and 140 gigawatts by March 2030. To achieve this target, India plans to organize 10 gigawatts of wind energy auctions every year till 2028.