China Ming Yang Wind Power Group Ltd. won a 150-megawatt order in India after becoming the first Chinese turbine maker to receive approval to sell machines in Asia’s second-biggest wind market as sales slow at home.
The project by an undisclosed developer in Maharashtra state will use 1.5-megawatt turbines, Hiren Shah, chief executive officer of Ming Yang’s local unit, Global Wind Power Ltd., said in an interview from Mumbai. The machine was approved for sale by the government-run Centre for Wind Energy Technology in October.
Chinese manufacturers such as Ming Yang, Sinovel Wind Group Co. and Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co. are seeking to diversify beyond their home market. At least 88 percent of their sales in 2012 came from China, where wind installations contracted 42 percent in the first half of this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
In contrast, India is forecast to install 2,050 megawatts of wind capacity in 2013, surpassing the U.S. for the first time to become the world’s third-biggest market, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
Global Wind, a venture between Ming Yang and billionaire Anil Ambani’s Reliance Capital Ltd., expects to get Indian approval to sell a second 1.5-megawatt turbine around mid-2014.
Ming Yang’s newer machines are able to generate more power from lower wind speeds, making them attractive to Indian wind-farm developers who are increasingly choosing turbines based on their efficiency rather than price, Shah said.
“The customer is educated enough now, so they’re not thinking about cost per megawatt,” Shah said. “They’re thinking about the cost per unit of electricity generated.”
The biggest obstacle developers in India face is “the cost and availability of finance” with local lending rates at about 12 percent, Shah said. Purchasing Ming Yang turbines may make developers eligible for funding from Chinese banks, he said.
China Development Bank Corp. struck an agreement with Ming Yang and Reliance last year to lend as much as $3 billion for 2,500 megawatts of projects in India. Global Wind also has a preliminary agreement with the Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd. for export finance, Shah said.
Global Wind is assembling turbines from mostly imported components at a facility in Silvassa, about 160 kilometers (100 miles) north of Mumbai. It also makes the biggest turbine available in India -- a 2.5-megawatt machine based on Fuhrlander AG technology that was used to build a 45-megawatt wind farm in April for Reliance Power Ltd., said Shah.