In an exclusive interview with the EnergyInfraPost.com, Rathin Basu, Chairman Alstom India and Managing Director Alstom T&D (both being GE companies now) said GE is all geared up to support India’s 100 GW solar capacity addition plan.
Q: How do you see the private sector getting benefitted from the government’s thrust on solar energy?
A: It has opportunity from two sides, one from the developer side and second from the manufacturer’s side. It’s a massive number (100 GW solar power generation by 2022) and very very challenging…The response from the industry is very positive and overall the developers are also very keen. It seems that we would be pretty close to that number the way things are currently shaping up. In terms of ourselves (Alstom India) yes we are ready at two ends, one is the solar side itself as you probably know that we have recently been acquired by GE. We have solar power solutions with the electrical balance of plant, which could make good contributions to all solar large projects. And if you come to transmission then we have been a market leader for transmission and therefore increasing renewable is going to be a challenge for the grid because these are intermediate kind of power supply and we require strong and stable grid.
Q: Whether Alstom T&D was in the position to tap this market?
A: For renewable power projects to get connected at the state level, you need significant investments and hopefully UDAY (Ujjawal Discom Assurance Yojana) programme would attract new investments particularly in those states where large renewable investments are lined up. That part of transmission and sub-transmission should be interesting to follow and therefore we as a company should be able to contribute significantly in addition to a traditional transmission player to come up with solutions to stabilize the grid and we have proper solutions.
Q: The important factor for stabilizing the grid is connecting the national grid with the southern grid at the same frequency level for optimum evacuation of power?
A: Power Grid Corporation as a central utility has an immense role to play at the national level but as you that only 3% investment in the power transmission sector is from the private players and therefore the investments should be expected from them going ahead. The role for private players would be to build long transmission corridors for bulk power transfer. Today at the national level the inter-regional power transmission is 46 GW or 46,000 MW. The plan is to reach 64 GW by 2017 and by 2022 to reach somewhere around 124 GW. These would be massive investments in inter-regional power transmission and would provide a good play for technology companies like us.