solar cell

Chinese solar equipment manufacturer Xi’an Longi Silicon Materials has signed a Rs16.7bn ($251.6m) deal with the state of Andhra Pradesh in India, for setting up a solar cell and module manufacturing facility in the state.

This initial investment is expected to open up around 1,000 new employment opportunities in the Indian state.

Xi’an Longi Silicon Materials chairman Baoshen Zhong said: "We will invest $250m for setting up a solar cell and module manufacturing facility in Andhra Pradesh.

"This will boost production of clean energy equipment in the country."

The firm has also planned another investment Rs80bn ($1.2bn) in the state for a solar project that can generate 5,000 additional jobs.

"Solar power is the best solution for sustainable economic growth."

The proposed foreign investment is in-line with India’s renewable generation target, which aims to boost its solar power capacity, under the National Solar Mission, to produce 100GW by 2022.

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Planned to be established at Sri City in Chittoor district of the state, the manufacturing plant will have the capacity to produce 1GW of solar cells and modules each.

The proposed solar park is expected to have a capacity of 500MW.

Andhra Pradesh Energy, Infrastructure and Investment Secretary Ajay Jain said: "This investment will boost manufacturing facilities in the state.

"This initial investment will create 1,000 jobs."

Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu said: "For the first time, very good investment is coming from China.

"Solar power is the best solution for sustainable economic growth."

Image: The proposed plant will produce 1GW of solar cells and 1GW solar modules. Photo: courtesy of dan /