Published on March 28th, 2012 | by Zachary Shahan8
India Throws More Support behind Clean Energy
India’s looking to further boost its economy with clean energy subsidies and tax breaks, its latest budget indicates. Later this year, the nation is expected to launch its 12th five-year plan. Under this plan, solar equipment and other clean energy technologies would find themselves exempt from taxes as the nation works to increase infrastructure spending.
“In order to fully realise our potential in the realm of solar energy, solar thermal projects need encouragement,” Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said in a recent budget speech. “I propose to fully exempt plant and equipment etc for the initial setting up of such projects from special countervailing duties.”
Companies producing lithium-ion batteries, LED lights, and other such technologies will be in a similar situation.
“In contrast, import duties on SUVs were raised to 75 per cent from 60 per cent, while the excise duty on large cars made in the country was also increased to 27 per cent from 22 per cent,” Business Green reports.
As reported previously here on CleanTechnica, India plans to be getting 20,000 MW of electricity from clean energy by 2020, and solar power is likely to be a big part of that.
Meanwhile, however, funding for pollution control and some other green programs dipped. Hopefully, the clean energy focus will more than cover any shortcomings in those arena… of course, a combination of strong policies in both would be ideal.
“The big car duties may encourage consumers to go for more fuel-efficient cars, but much more aggressive subsidies are needed to cultivate innovation, technology advancement and global competition, so that India can surge ahead to claim global clean revolution leadership,” Aditi Dass, director of programs in India at The Climate Group, said.
Image: Solar panels in India by fredericknoronha