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Welspun Group, Alpha Lead Bidders in Indian State Solar Auction

May 14 (Bloomberg) -- Welspun Group, India’s largest solar photovoltaic developer, and Alpha Infraprop Pvt. led with the lowest bids in an auction for 200 megawatts of solar capacity in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, a government official said.

“We have to review the bids to see if they are realistic before we announce the winners,” Rajesh Mehta, chief general manager of Madhya Pradesh Power Management Co., the state-run agency overseeing the auction, said by telephone today. The results will be announced in about 15 days, he said.

India is using auctions to push down average solar power rates, which have fallen 38 percent since December 2010, as it seeks to avoid the surging renewable-energy subsidies seen in Europe. Global solar power prices are plunging because of declining equipment costs amid a panel supply glut, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Alpha Infraprop, a Mumbai-based company that’s building a coal-based generation plant in Andhra Pradesh state, submitted the lowest bid for 20 megawatts of capacity, committing it to sell solar-based power at 7,900 rupees ($147) a megawatt-hour, Mehta said. That’s about 13 percent lower than the global average for a photovoltaic project using crystalline panels, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Welspun offered the second-lowest bid of 8,050 rupees a megawatt-hour for 125 megawatts of capacity, Mehta said.

Simplex Infrastructure Ltd. and Acme Tele Power Ltd. followed with bids of 9,590 rupees and 12,450 rupees a megawatt-hour, according to a list from Acme, which was present at the bid opening.

To contact the reporter on this story: Natalie Obiko Pearson in Mumbai at npearson7@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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