Energy Sector Dialogue between India and Germany

In the framework of the intergovernmental negotiations on development cooperation between the Government of the Republic of India and the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), recently held a virtual sector dialogue. From the Indian side, the discussions were led by Shri Aniruddha Kumar, Additional Secretary, MNRE. From the German side, the discussions were led by Mr. Philipp Knill, Head of Division Asia and South Asia, BMZ.

Both sides agreed that Indo-German cooperation for promoting the Energy Transition has been fruitful and called for more intense and closer cooperation to address the common goal of increasing access to sustainable energy, reducing carbon emissions and mitigating climate change. The Indian side highlighted that the energy transition has been one of the top priorities despite the COVID-19 crisis. All agreed that the COVID-19 pandemic also can be viewed as an opportunity to transition to alternate technologies like offshore and hydrogen. The German side gave insights in its decision to phase out coal power, increase RE penetration, green recovery measures and the EU climate goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

In addition to the mutual goal of promoting the energy transition, Germany is offering an intensified cooperation with India as a global partner. Such a partnership would aim at achieving climate goals and SDGs jointly in different sectors like urban development, agriculture and natural resources management and certainly as well in the energy sector. It would broaden the scope of work and build upon the dialogue under the Indo-German Energy Forum with its exchange on lessons learned, private sector cooperation, involvement of think tanks and more. 

The priority topics where the Indian and German side identified possibilities of future cooperation included transmission infrastructure for evacuation of renewable energy from Leh-Ladakh region in India, solarisation of cities, innovative PV applications, promotion of high quality solar investments, decentralised cold storage at farm level, solar rooftop and further support to the KUSUM scheme. Special emphasis was also laid by the German side on the need of reforms or innovative financing instruments to mitigate the payment risk and boost the confidence of renewable energy investors and sector coupling for promoting electric mobility in India. Both sides agreed that the areas of charging infrastructure for EVs, battery storage, pump storage hydro projects, would be important to ensure flexibility in grid operation. Topics which will be explored for future cooperation. Both sides highlighted the important role of IGEF along with the different implementing agencies of Indo German Development Cooperation in the Energy sector. The ongoing partnership between India and Germany through complementary support by KfW, GIZ and Germany’s National Metrology Institute PTB in Financial Cooperation and Technical Cooperation can be considered a best practice in development cooperation worldwide. Both sides agreed to follow-up and to support each other in an effort to make the planet clean and green.