Emphasising that manufacturing of solar photovoltaic (PV) modules in one country is a “risky strategy”, European Commissioner for Energy Kadri Simson, on Wednesday, said broadening the manufacturing base, in terms of countries, will help decentralise the technology.

“Until now, we all know that manufacturing solar PV has largely been dominated by one country. But, putting all our eggs in one basket is a risky strategy. Especially when the stakes are so high for the energy transition. These days we live in a multi-polar world. If renewables are the future, then how we source them should reflect that,” Simson said .

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The EU Commissioner, who is on her first official visit to India, stressed on broadening the manufacturing market, which will decentralise the technology for future generations and will help boost both Indian and EU economies.

“This has been high on the agenda of the EU-India Clean Energy and Climate Partnership,” she added.

“There is much more to do and untapped potential (of solar equipment manufacturing) to explore,” Simson said. “Especially when it comes to realigning global supply chains. This is where the recently established Trade and Technology Council will come into play. The EU and India can learn from each other. Especially, when it comes to diversifying supply chains and developing an open, competitive, and rules-based market for solar,” she added.

Supply chain disruptions

Simson was of the view that the EU and India have a responsibility to help drive the shift towards renewables.

Speaking at the event, the Minister of State for New and Renewable Energy Bhagawanth Khuba said, “World has witnessed some major supply chain disruptions in the recent past. In order to avoid such disruptions in future, the international community has rightly identified the need to diversify our supply chains to make them more resilient and responsive. This becomes even more crucial in the context of RE supply chains, as RE holds the key to a timely energy transition to avoid catastrophic effects of climate change.”

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The Minister suggested that India and the EU must promote Joint R&D in solar PV technology for improving efficiency and developing reliable substitutes for silicon.

Khuba informed that India today has a solar manufacturing capacity of about 20 GW, which is expected to rise to about 75 GW with the enhanced PLI scheme.