India Must Develop Domestic Manufacturing Hub Of Photovoltaic Modules: Khuba

Turning the tables on foreign countries, India has to develop its own domestic market into a manufacturing hub for photovoltaic modules and make other countries traders of solar components under the Aatmanirbhar initiative, Bhagwanth Khuba, Minister of State for New and Renewable Energy, said in New Delhi on July 28.

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“So far India was dependent on other countries (for PV modules and solar components) but under Aatmanirbhar Bharat, we should not become only traders, we have to be manufacturers. PLI was launched precisely for this purpose. India must be a hub of it,” he said while addressing over 300 participants in a session on renewable energy.

He recalled that the Union Cabinet had given a nod to Rs 4,500 crore Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme in April last year to give an impetus to domestic manufacturing capacity of solar PV modules. Besides, the domestic producers were extended the funds to the tune of Rs 24,000 crore for solar cells and modules to enable India to turn from an importing to exporting nation. On the duties levied on solar modules, the Minister said, “It was not to discourage our Indian investors. It is to encourage Indian manufacturers so India should become a solar manufacturers hub in future.”

Last year, the government had announced an imposition of 40 % BCD (Basic Custom Duty) on solar modules and 25% on solar cells with effect from April 1, 2022. Khuba had told the Parliament in March this year that the solar manufacturing industry is providing 29,900 new jobs every year. The employment generated is based on the installed capacity. Union Minister for MNRE RK Singh held in July that India had already achieved more than 40 per cent of required energy from non-fossil fuel, nine years ahead of the target timeline. Replying to a question of V Vijayasai Reddy, an MP, the Khuba had added, “One MW provides 2.6 jobs per year and based on that annual jobs per year is 29,900.  Our rate of growth of renewable energy is the fastest in the world and continue to be the fastest.”

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