Empowering India’s Solar Export: Driving Growth Through Photovoltaic Technology and Regulatory Initiatives – SolarQuarter

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Representational image. Credit: Canva

In recent years, India has positioned itself as a significant contributor to the global solar photovoltaic (PV) market, leveraging its abundant sunlight and growing commitment to renewable energy. Central to India’s solar export growth are the Harmonized System of Nomenclature (HSN) codes, specifically HSN codes 85414200 and 85414300, which classify photovoltaic cells and modules for international trade.


HSN code 85414200 denotes photovoltaic cells not assembled into modules or panels, serving as the foundational components of solar panels that convert sunlight into electricity. Conversely, HSN code 85414300 covers photovoltaic cells assembled into modules or panels, representing the final products utilized in solar energy systems.


India’s solar export landscape reflects a disparity between module and cell manufacturing capacities. Solar module exports have thrived, driven by India’s robust manufacturing capabilities. However, solar cell manufacturing capacity has not been as competitive. This imbalance has prompted governmental interventions, such as the Approved List of Models and Manufacturers (ALMM), introduced to bolster the domestic solar market and enhance export prospects for Indian manufacturers.


Implemented from April 1, 2024, the ALMM notification aims to stimulate demand for domestically manufactured solar panels, prioritizing them for government projects and incentives. This initiative incentivizes domestic manufacturers to scale up production, aligning with India’s renewable energy targets and fostering a self-reliant solar industry ecosystem. According to the Department of Commerce, India’s total solar PV exports, comprising both modules and cells, surpassed ₹134,745.98 lakhs. Among these exports, solar modules accounted for ₹1,30,848.22 lakhs, while solar cells accounted for ₹3,897.76 lakhs.

The ALMM notification, while encouraging for domestic manufacturers, has raised concerns among solar project developers regarding competitive pricing. Some argue that restrictions on exports could help maintain competitive pricing in the domestic market.

Nonetheless, the increased focus on domestic manufacturing, fueled by ALMM, creates a conducive environment for Indian solar manufacturers. With rising demand for solar panels domestically, manufacturers have the opportunity to expand operations and export competitively priced products.

India’s comparative advantage in solar module manufacturing positions it favorably to meet the global demand for solar energy solutions. Leveraging its manufacturing prowess and technological expertise, India can emerge as a key exporter of solar panels and related components.

Furthermore, India’s commitment to sustainability aligns with global decarbonization efforts, driving demand for solar energy solutions worldwide. This presents a significant opportunity for Indian manufacturers to contribute to the global transition to sustainable energy.

Private-sector investments and collaborations complement governmental initiatives, facilitating technology transfer, innovation, and market access. Partnerships between domestic manufacturers and international stakeholders further bolster India’s position in the global solar market.

India’s geographical advantage and strategic location enhance its competitiveness as a solar energy exporter, enabling efficient logistics and supply chain management. India’s solar export growth is propelled by advancements in photovoltaic technology, supportive government policies, and increasing global demand for renewable energy solutions. With a renewed focus on domestic manufacturing and export-oriented strategies, India is poised to emerge as a leading player in the global solar energy market, driving sustainable development and economic growth.

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