It seems that the recent delays in commissioning various new solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants in Russia won’t go unpunished, according to recent reports. The Russian state will apparently be imposing large fines on a number of large developers that have failed to meet their deadlines.
The move is following on the fact that — as noted recently by a spokesman for the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade — out of the many investors who were the recipients of high tariffs for the development of solar PV plants in the country, not even one commissioned a project in 2014.
The plans had been for 3 new solar projects — altogether with a total capacity of 35.2 megawatts (MW) — to be commissioned by December of last year. Owing to a variety of factors, these goals weren’t met — with difficulties in securing loans + sourcing/localization issues being the most common ones.
The localization issues are partly due to the fact that Russia is requiring that companies that participate in the country’s solar energy tenders source at least 50% of their equipment/materials locally — this number will rise to 70% in 2016.
According to Russian officials (based on current legislation), the developers that have run significantly late face penalties in the amount of up to 25% of the total cost of the power plant in question — which in this case means penalties as high as $10 million.
One of the companies facing these fines is one of the largest solar energy developers in the country, Energiya Solntsa — which was supposed to commission two 15 MW solar PV projects last year. These two projects are currently expected to be commissioned sometime this year. Reportedly, the reason for the companies running behind schedule are the localization requirements.
Image Credit: Russian Flag via Flickr CC