In order to achieve the 175 GW clean energy target by 2022, the government’s clean energy initiatives will have to bear fruits in financial year 2018.
A major part of this plan hinges on State governments achieving their targets for renewable energy purchase. This would require policy initiatives from States and a greater budgetary allocation to them. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) Secretary Rajeev Kapoor told BusinessLine earlier this month that the Centre was working with States to ensure usage of renewable energy.
MNRE saw its budget virtually double in financial year 2017 with the total planned expenditure growing to ₹9,306 crore against ₹4,076.03 crore in financial year 2016. But financial year 2018 is likely to see a greater rejig of existing allocations and an expected push towards hydropower.
Financial year 2017 was termed as the year of hydropower by Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power, Coal and New and Renewable Energy, Piyush Goyal. FY2018 is likely to classify hydropower projects up to 100 MW as renewable energy projects. Small hydropower projects (less that 50 MW) are already classified and eligible for benefits as renewable energy.
Voicing the industry’s demand for the same, Vikram Aggarwal, Managing Director at Virtuaal Infra Power, points out that renewable energy hydro power projects are expecting a sustained push from the Budget with funds earmarked and tax holiday under income tax. The industry also expects a tax rebate on equipment used for the projects. The industry has been languishing for several years and a special cell for single window clearance on land and forest/environment issues is expected.
Source : Business Line