“The schemes announced in Union Budget 2018 were in support to the solar sector, leading to a lot of expectations. However, the lack of policies and initiatives to support the proposals became a dampener. This makes the 2019 Interim Budget extremely crucial for the Solar Manufacturing Sector in India. The decrease in the import of solar panels and the promotion of domestic manufacturing will only become feasible with relevant policies that promote ‘Make in India’ solar panels. This will provide the much-required visibility to the solar manufacturing sector and make it a feasible business proposition.
The lack of anti-dumping policies and the limited geographical application of Safeguard Duty has resulted in most imported routed through Thailand, Vietnam and other neighboring countries. The budget should address this loophole and propose a uniform policy across countries. The industry needs allocation of separate funds, along with complementary subsidies, that will aid in creating and upgrading the solar infrastructure in India. Similar to last year’s ‘Kusum scheme’, we hope that focus on areas with difficult terrain, like Ladakh, the islands of Andaman and Nicobar and the Interiors of the Thar Desert, will go a long way to realize the solar mission.
Further to it, strict implementation of Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) certification and the inclusion of Energy Storage Solutions in the Interim Budget policies is imperative, given the ambitious targets set for 2022. The upcoming budget can pave way for the industry to become a preferred choice for employment, through favorable skill development programs and schemes.”