India set to open offshore wind tenders in early 2016

The Indian government will launch tenders for offshore wind leases in early 2016, with the number of zones up for grabs yet to be determined, the Press Trust of India (PTI) said, citing an official.

New and Renewable Energy Secretary Upendra Tripathy was quoted as saying, on the sidelines of an event, that the tenders will start in “three months time”. The developers that offer the lower tariffs for offshore wind power will get contracts.

In September India’s Union Cabinet gave the green light to a new national policy for the development of wind projects off the country’s 7,600-km long coastline. The government has tasked the National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE) with identifying offshore wind energy blocks. Before starting the tender, these areas need to be approved by the Defence Ministry and other authorities, Tripathy has said.

Two recent pre-feasibility studies showed that the Indian states of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu each have eight potential zones with wind speeds and water depths suitable for offshore wind farm development.

India's plan is to use an open International Competitive Bidding (ICB) process. The winners will be paying lease fees for the offshore zones during survey, construction and operations.

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