India recorded its highest-ever solar power capacity addition in financial year 2016-17 and yet missed out on the targeted capacity addition by a massive 54%.

The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) of India has reported that a record 5,526 megawatts of solar power capacity was added in the country between April 2016 and March 2017. The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy is yet to report the figures on its own website but it has communicated the same to the CEA.

With the record capacity addition took the cumulative solar power capacity in India to 12,289 megawatts as on 31 March 2017, an impressive jump of 82%. Even more the impressive is the pace of capacity addition in March 2017, the last month of the financial year. Between April 2016 and February 2017 a total of 2,804 megawatts capacity was added while 2,722 megawatts capacity was added during March 2017 itself.

The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy had set a target of 12,000 megawatts solar power capacity addition in FY2016-17. Despite the huge shortfall from the target ministry officials were optimistic given the record capacity addition. In FY2015-16, the ministry had set a target to add 1,400 megawatt solar power capacity while 3,019 megawatts capacity was added.

Rating agency ICRA now expects that an estimated 7.5 gigawatt solar power capacity would likely be added in the current financial year. Consultancy firm Mercom Capital Group expects almost 10 gigawatts capacity addition in the calendar year 2017.


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