Following the launch of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, (JNNSM) in 2010 the domestic manufacturing capacity of SPV cells and modules has increased from about 200 MW to 2000 MW.
One of the important objectives of the JNNSM is to promote domestic manufacturing in solar energy sector and certain domestic content requirements were made mandatory in various schemes of JNNSM Phase-I. The Government has also extended the benefits of excise duty exemption on finished products and of concessional customs duty on raw materials and equipment required for manufacturing, to encourage domestic industry.
However, recently there have been reports in media of some of manufacturers facing difficulties in operating their plants to full capacity in the absence of adequate orders resulting from intense cost competition with suppliers of imported cells/modules.
On the other hand, from the electricity consumer’s interest point of view, another objective of the JNNSM is to also progressively reduce the cost of solar power. This can be achieved through continuous research as well as through induction of latest, state-of-art technologies.
In this regard, besides increased support to research projects, benefits of concessional customs duty is being provided for imports of the finished solar products/equipments also.