Working on sops to attract $100 bn for renewable energy: Goyal

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Sep 12 2014, 08:26am hrs
Union minister for power & coal Piyush Goyal on Thursday said the government is working on a policy for the renewable energy sector to attract investments worth $100 billion within the next five years.

The power ministry is working on ways to provide tax breaks and cheaper loans in the impending policy to motivate prospective investors in the renewable energy sector.

Describing the demand for an anti-dumping duty on solar panels as needless, Goyal reasoned that it would kill the solar mission as it would have led to escalation in tariff from the solar plants. He said domestic solar panel manufacturers have 'suo-moto' withdrawn their plea for such a duty.

With Coal India's trade unions deciding to oppose the move to sell 10% government stake in the company, the minister said the Union Cabinets decision to do so was not a half-measure and the government has no desire to fully divest its assets in the company.

However, the unions on Thursday reaffirmed their firm opposition to the disinvestment exercise and said they would resort to work-to-rule for three days beginning September 18.

Goyal said his ministry has proposed to organise a conference of his counterparts from Saarc nations.

On the lines of Prime Minister Narendra Modi reaching out to Indias neighbours during his swearing-in, we look at relationship with an open mind based on the strength of Indias security interests and better economic relations, he said.

Highlighting the cordial relations with the states in sorting out issues impeding generation and transmission of electricity, Goyal said during his recent interactions with the governments of 19 states, he found that, cutting across party lines, they extended full cooperation.