SunBorne Energy, a specialist in utility scale solar solutions, and Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP), the world's largest producer of solar panels, have entered into a framework agreement for the supply of 100MW of solar panels over the next two years for projects in India.
Suntech will supply 280Wp polycrystalline silicon modules for projects that will be designed, installed and commissioned by SunBorne Energy. The agreement includes an initial order for 10MW of solar panels for a project in Gujarat, India. Through this partnership, SunBorne will deploy proven, world-class solar technology and build local solar expertise to deliver affordable solar power throughout the country.
"We chose Suntech because of their clear technology leadership and long-term commitment to India. We are proud to support the Gujarat government in their endeavour to bring clean power to India and attain energy security. This partnership reiterates our action plan of providing cost-effective utility scale solar solutions and targeting grid parity by 2017," said James Abraham, Managing Director & CEO, SunBorne Energy.
"We're excited to partner with SunBorne Energy to drive solar industry growth in India," said Dr. Zhengrong Shi, Suntech's Chairman and CEO. "Currently, one in three people in India lack reliable access to electricity, and the rapid deployment of solar energy has the potential to help close this gap. This project will provide thousands of people in India with clean and affordable power."
The solar industry in India has been growing rapidly, backed by government support at both the federal and state level. India has a target to reach a cumulative installation of 2GW of off-grid and 20GW of on-grid PV installations by 2022 to help meet the country's burgeoning energy demands.
Solar technology is particularly well suited to address booming energy consumption across India, as total primary energy demand is expected to increase by 3.1% annually from 2008 to 2035, according to the IEA's 2010 World Energy Outlook. The country's average annual solar insolation is one of the best in the world reaching 2000 sun hours per year in some locations. Solar technology also helps to address peak power shortages, which can be particularly severe during summer months. The power production of solar panels roughly coincides with peak demand hours, as electricity is consumed during daylight for commercial and industrial activities.