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India calls for foreign investment in clean energy sector

/ 04:21 PM September 22, 2015

Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s second visit to United States later this week, Indian Minister of State for Power, Coal and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal has said the US Clean Energy and Financing Companies must capitalize on the enormous opportunity in India.

Speaking at a high-level gathering of US companies in the renewable energy development and financing sector, organized by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in partnership with the American Council on a Renewable Energy (ACORE) in Washington DC, the minister addressed concerns and challenges faced by investors in India.

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In particular, he addressed concerns relating to the fiscal health of distribution companies in India and said the government was looking at long-term and sustainable solutions to issue which would be implemented soon. He also tackled the issue of the rupee’s stability by pointing out that the Indian rupee has never depreciated more than 3.5% CAGR in 25 years. In addition he mentioned that a number of stalled projects were being cleared.

While acknowledging constraining factors, the minister urged the US and its constituent companies to be a partner in this process and to help come up with innovative solutions so as not to miss out on the tremendous opportunity in India which was set to become the largest clean energy market in the next 10 years.

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The minister also laid out the ruling National Democratic Alliance government’s vision to get to the ambitious target of 175 GW of clean energy by 2022

Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, Confederation of Indian Industry, praised the coalition’s efforts to scale up the clean energy sector and said “Indian industry stands ready to partner and work with the government to achieve the ambitious target set by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi”.

Sumant Sinha, chairman and CEO, Renew a Power Ventures, pointed out that $150 million of financing was required in the clean energy space of which $100 million would be debt and $50 million would be equity. The United States can play a big role in this space in India, he added. The meeting is a run-up to the US-India Energy Dialogue and the US-India Strategic and Commercial Dialogue which are expected to boost the bilateral partnership days before the Prime Minister’s anticipated second visit to US this week end.

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