August 28, 2017

Speaking at Implementation Agreement between MNRE & GIZ on Green Energy Corridor, New Delhi

My colleagues from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, friends from the media – India and Germany share a very-very dynamic and active engagement, furthering the relations in a variety of areas. During the last interaction, inter-ministerial interaction in Berlin between Chancellor Markel and Prime Minister Mr Modi, I believe the Indo-German cooperation, both on economic side and, if I can say, even on the people to people side, reached a new zenith.

One could see the body language. In fact, on a lighter note, my daughter was there. She was on her way to school. She stopped by a couple of days in Berlin, and the excitement in the air was palpable. And, Chancellor Merkel and Prime Minister Modi outside the hotel under the Gate, The Brandenburg Gate, was truly a delightful sight. The bonhomie, the way they were bonding with each other is a very rare kind of relationship that one finds, particularly, in this world of serious international engagements and structured diplomatic dialogues. And, within that, clean energy has a very important role to play within this larger, broader context of the Indo-German relationship.

We both share very similar philosophies. German, in fact, went almost 85% green on a day just before when we were there. A few days before our visit there, Germany had achieved almost 85% of the total energy needs coming out of green, clean energy for the whole 24-hour cycle, which was I think a huge achievement for an industrial superpower like Germany.

Similarly, when it comes to solar power engagement, I think what Germany did was phenomenal – 20 years ahead of its time in a way. Of course, you are paying a little bit of a price with that with the large subsidies that you are burdened with. But I think over the last 10 years, your growth in solar from 2006 to 2016 has been really rapid. You have a large 44 GW installed base on solar. You have a large base on wind in Germany.

And, if at all some country started this grid scale, utility scale solar power concept, I think it first started in Germany. We have deployed that very successfully in India, we have now more than 34 solar parks, which will be developing 20 GW of solar power. And, we are going in for the phase-II of that with another 20 GW of solar parks being considered in the government of India.

I am delighted that this relationship between GIZ and India will result in improved market mechanisms and regulations, help us train manpower in India to ensure grid stability, to ensure more and more integration of renewables in the country, and I am sure will lead to a safer grid, a more secure grid, and a grid which can also take care of cyber challenges, where data becomes secure within the system.

We are implementing the phase-I of the GEC (Green Energy Corridors), where we are evacuating green energy from these solar installations or wind installations into the national grid. We already have about 9,400 circuit kilometres of Green Energy Corridors under implementation in India. It will entail an investment of close to $2 billion. And, we are now initiating the second phase of the Green Energy Corridors, which will probably start sometime next year.

The support that Germany, and particularly, KFW has given in our Green Energy Corridors is also much appreciated. We are now setting up regional energy management centres, which will help us ensure much better grid management technologies coming in at the regional level. And all of these things put together, will help us I am sure achieve our 175 GW renewable energy target with the close cooperation, assistance and support from friends like Germany.

So, thank you very much your Excellency for the support of the German government and the people of Germany in our endeavours to also be one of the world’s largest clean energy producers. And I have no doubt in my mind, given the commitment that Chancellor Merkel had to supporting our programme, and the own commitment and passion with which Prime Minister Modi is focusing on leaving behind a better planet for our next generation, I am sure we will together make the world a safer place to live in.

Thank you.

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