Signet Solar to invest Rs.20 bn in Tamil Nadu

March 17th, 2008 - 7:38 pm ICT by admin  


Chennai, March 17 (IANS) Signet Solar Inc, manufacturer of silicon thin film photovoltaic (PV) modules, will invest Rs.20 billion to locate its first manufacturing site in India in the Sriperumbudur Special Economic Zone (SEZ) near here, the company said Monday. The technology and manufacturing know-how for the site will be transferred from Signet’s German operations.

Explaining the reason for investing in India, Prabhu Goel, chairman and founder of the firm, told reporters: “Signet has already pre-sold the entire capacity of its German plant for the next three years.”

“Additionally, our customers are demanding multi-fold increases in our capacity and for which they are willing to purchase solar photovoltaic modules under advanced contracts,” he added.

In order to meet the demand, Signet is setting up its new plant here, Goel said.

“Chennai will be our next major manufacturing site with a planned capacity of over 300 MW of solar panels produced each year,” he added.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect was signed between Goel and M.F. Farooqui, industries secretary of Tamil Nadu, in the presence of Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi here earlier.

The company has more than $400 million in advance orders for the first three years of production.

The German plant, scheduled to start production by third quarter of 2008 will have a total annual production capacity of 60 MW. Additional production lines will be added to increase manufacturing capacity to over 100 MW in Germany by 2010.

In June last year, the firm announced plans to set up three solar photovoltaic manufacturing centres in India over a 10-year period.

Signet Solar chose to locate its second global manufacturing site in India because of the attractive incentives offered by the government, including the recently announced semiconductor policy initiative and because of the strong emerging demand for solar energy in India.

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