The agreement was signed by Mr Karnam Sekar, Deputy Managing Director, State Bank of India and Mr Onno Ruhl, Country Director, World Bank India. Finance Minister Mr Arun Jaitley was also in attendance at the signing ceremony along with Mr Piyush Goyal, Minister of State with Independent Charge for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy, Mr Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Group, Mr Shaktikanta Das, Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Mr Upendra Tripathy, Secretary, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy and Mrs Varsha Purandare, MD & CEO, SBI Capital Markets Ltd.
“With around 300 days of sunshine every year, India has among the best conditions in the world to harness solar energy” said Mr Onno Ruhl. “The rapid expansion of solar power can improve the quality of life for millions of Indians, especially for its poorest citizens. It can also create thousands of jobs in the solar industry and underpin progress in all areas of development, helping the country fulfil its dream of becoming the ‘India of the future’.”
The facility will help SBI to finance grid connected rooftop solar PV projects at very competitive rates. This in turn will catalyse the market and support the Government of India’s target of 40 GW of electricity generated from rooftop solar. The beneficiaries of the facility will be developers, aggregators and end users who wish to establish solar PV projects, mainly on commercial, industrial and institutional rooftops. This initiative will enable at least 400 MW of solar capacity across the country.
The variety of financing mechanisms available under the programme will represent a major innovation for the Indian rooftop solar market, providing clean, renewable energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by displacing thermal generation. The scope of the programme also aims to improve the investment climate for solar PV and provide technical assistance to strengthen the capacity of key institutions, supporting the development of the overall rooftop solar PV market.
SBI Capital Markets, a subsidiary of SBI, acted in an advisory capacity during the setting up and structuring of the facility.
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