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New Delhi: UK's development finance institution (DFI) British International Investment on Thursday announced a total commitment of $89 million to scale clean energy capacity in India.

The investment comprises an $47 million follow-on commitment to Fourth Partner Energy, and an $42 million project finance debt investment to Thar Surya 1 Private Limited – an Indian subsidiary of Enel S.p.A, Italy (Enel). Both investments will target expansion of renewable power in India and help accelerate the country’s energy transition over the long term.

BII’s $47 million follow-on commitment to Fourth Partner Energy, a leading renewable energy company for commercial and industrial businesses, will fund around 294 MW of greenfield renewable generation capacity across India, Sri-Lanka, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Vietnam.

The added capacity will increase the supply of power to the company’s commercial and industrial customers and help avoid nearly 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually, the statement said.

The latest investment brings BII’s total commitment to Fourth Partner Energy to $80 million – with an investment goal of promoting clean energy alternatives to coal, across South and Southeast Asia.

BII’s $42 million debt investment to Thar Surya 1 Private Limited, forms part of an estimated $200 million total project that aims to fund the development, construction, and maintenance of a 300 MW solar project in India.

The project is designed to displace thermal generation in the grid, abate 697,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually, and meet the equivalent demand of 151,000 consumers in the country.

The addition of clean energy to the grid will help meet India's heightened energy demand, boost access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy, while also increasing productivity for businesses and consumers across the country.

Under its new five-year strategy, BII has set a target for 30 per cent of its new investments to be in climate finance, with a strong emphasis on investing in clean and renewable infrastructure. The DFI’s new strategy is driven by its mission to help address some of the urgent challenges posed by climate change, including decarbonising the energy mix, build green energy capacity and helping catalyse growth of the renewable sector in the countries in which it invests.

Srini Nagarajan, managing director and head of Asia, at BII, said: “Investing to bolster India renewable energy is a critical strategic step toward ensuring the country’s growth ambitions align with its goals to achieve a net-zero carbon future. BII’s investments in Fourth Partner Energy and the Thar Solar PV project is a continuation of more than 30 years’ experience of investing in India, and its objective to help tackling the climate emergency while meeting India’s increased demand and consumption of energy."

Key clean infrastructure investments in India made by British International Investment over the last strategy period include, a $30 million pioneering directed green lending facility to Tata Cleantech Capital to enhance water and energy efficiency, and reduce greenhouse gas emission in India; in addition to a $10 million investment in Roserve to support wastewater treatment and increase water efficiency in India.

BII also founded Ayana Renewable Power in 2018 and has committed $230 million to date, helping to mobilise further capital to accelerate green energy capacity for India’s long-term economic development.