GMR Infrastructure to develop solar project in Gujarat

The Gujarat government has given the green light for GMR to set up a 25-megawatt solar power plant in the state. The deal is GMR’s first ever photovoltaic project.

Bangalore-based infrastructure investor GMR Infrastructure will develop a 25-megawatt solar power plant in the Indian state of Gujarat, the company said in a statement.

The solar plant is the company’s first photovoltaic project, GMR said, adding that solar power projects installed in Gujarat until March 2014 can be exempted from paying electricity taxes for 25 years or until the project’s life span expires.

GMR has 11 years of experience in power generation and has three operating assets with a total capacity of 808 megawatts. It also has a total of 11 projects, totalling 8448 megawatts, in various stages of development, the company said.

The solar deal forms part of the Gujarat government’s initiative to tap solar energy for power generation, GMR said. The state government is aiming at generating 3,000 megawatts of solar power over the next five years by installing 500 megawatts of solar power generators. Under the state’s Solar Power Policy 2009, each solar power generator should have a minimum 5-megawatt capacity.

In September, the state government announced its plans to work on a public-private partnership basis with International Finance Corporation (IFC), a World Bank unit, to design and structure a distributed rooftop solar power project in Gandhinagar, the state capital. The two-phased project is expected to generate 40 megawatts of power for nearly 100,000 households in Gandhinagar and contribute to Gujarat’s goal of installing 500 megawatts of solar capacity by March 2014.