Targets to fund $2 b renewable projects in Asia in 2013-14

The Asian Development Bank on Wednesday announced its first equity investment in India’s private sector renewable power generation.

The Philippines-based bank has decided to invest $30 million in Hyderabad-based NSL Renewable Power Private Ltd. ADB did not divulge the percentage of stake it is buying in the firm. NSL Renewable has a book value of Rs 525 crore as on March 31.

The investment is also ADB’s first private sector assistance to India’s hydropower sector. The bank, with participation from nearly 67 countries, invested $2.3 billion in renewable projects in Asia in 2012-13.

In 2013-14, it targets to invest another $2 billion, said Lakshmi Venkatachalam, Vice-President (Private Sector and Co-financing Operations) at ADB.

A few years ago, ADB joined hands with NTPC and Japan’s Kyuden International Corporation to develop renewable projects. However, the project has not seen the light of the day.

NSL Renewable will use the investment proceeds to partially finance the construction of its 100 MW Tidong run-of-rover hydropower project in Himachal Pradesh and the 75 MW Chilarwadi wind power project in Maharashtra.

NSL Renewable is part of the Rs 5,500-crore worth NSL Group that has interests in sugar, textile, and cotton and seed businesses, among others.

The firm targets to have 1,000 MW operating renewable power capacity by 2017, said M. Prabhakar Rao, Chairman of NSL Group.

NSL Renewable is the renewable energy vertical of NSL Group. It has currently 185 MW of installed capacity across wind, solar, bio-mass and Hydro and has under construction of over 200 MW in wind and 150 MW in Hydro. The company also has a development pipeline, which will enable it to reach 1 Giga-watt capacity by 2016.

This announcement comes a few days after NSL Renewable executed investment agreements of $60 million from a group of investors comprising. In 2011, NSL had raised $40 million from FE Clean Energy and $20 million from International Finance Corporation.

siddhartha.s@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on May 1, 2013)
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