Budget 2018: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has time to time asserted that India needs to rely more on renewable energy. The FICCI wants that the current tax exemptions provided to the renewable energy sector should be continued under the GST regime as well to achieve this target. “In addition, even the services rendered to a project owner for setting up and operation of renewable energy plant/project should be exempt from levy of GST. This would ensure that there is no adverse impact on the procurement made for the generation of renewable energy due to increase in tax costs,” the industry body says. It had said, “The project developer should be eligible to claim refund of GST paid (both at Central and State level) on goods and services used for setting up and operating renewable energy project. Alternatively, sale of goods and services to renewable energy projects should be zero rated, i.e. the vendors providing such goods and services at nil GST rate should be eligible to avail credit of the GST paid on inputs, capital goods and services used.”
FICCI has also recommended that in order to encourage an increase in the renewable energy generation capacity in the country full exemption from GST be provided to Renewable Energy Certificates. “Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) is a market based instrument to promote renewable energy generation. The Electricity Act, 2003, the policies framed under the Act, as also the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) provide for a roadmap for increasing the share of renewable in the total generation capacity in the country,” says FICCI.
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Earlier, PM Modi had said, “Green energy like solar power would power India as 175 gigawatt (GW) of electricity is expected to be generated from renewable sources by 2022, when India will be celebrating 75 years of independence.” The government is working towards meeting 40 per cent of the country’s energy needs from renewable sources like solar and wind by 2030,” PM Modi had said. PM Modi had said over Rs 11,000 crore were spent by the current Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the renewable energy sector in the past three years, against a mere Rs 4,000 crore by the Congress-led UPA. India is capable of generating a total 750 GW of energy if it puts all of its resources to work.