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REC Limited to Lead National Rooftop Solar Program

The program aims to set up 40 GW rooftop solar capacity by March 2026

Public infrastructure finance company REC Limited has been designated as the overall implementing agency for the Grid-Connected Rooftop Solar Program, which aims to achieve 40 GW of rooftop solar capacity by March 2026.

REC will be responsible for executing the program prepared by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and coordinating with all stakeholders across the country for its effective implementation.

The Phase II of the program, with an outlay of ₹118.14 billion (~$1.42 billion) for both the residential segment (Component A) and distribution companies (Component B), was initially launched in 2019 to achieve 40 GW capacity by 2022.

The MNRE later extended the program until March 31, 2026, citing the sluggish performance as most distribution companies (DISCOM) were averse to net metering as it deprived them of the opportunity to earn more revenue from premium consumers.

The DISCOMs, however, have recognized the additional benefits of rooftop solar, such as avoiding costs related to generation, transmission, and distribution losses, as well as meeting renewable purchase obligations.

As of November 2023, the MNRE had disbursed ₹9.08 billion (~$109.31 million) under the program.

Earlier this month, the Ministry also announced that it will increase the benchmark Central Financial Assistance for grid-connected rooftop solar power systems installed under the program.

An individual household with up to a 3-kW system in a general category state is eligible for a subsidy of ₹18,000 ($216.7)/kW, an increase from the earlier ₹14,588 (~$175.62)/ kW.

Recently, the MNRE issued orders to simplify the implementation and application process to help accelerate the large-scale adoption of grid- connected rooftop solar. It also directed DISCOMs and implementing agencies not to ask for any additional documents from the applicants other than those specified to avoid installation delays.

Originally published on Mercom India.

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