Navigating Legal Considerations in Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for Renewable Energy Projects in India

Posted On - 29 May, 2024 • By - Pooja Chatterjee

Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) are critical contracts in the energy sector, especially for renewable energy projects. They establish the terms and conditions under which electricity is generated, sold, and purchased. In India, PPAs play a vital role in ensuring the viability and sustainability of renewable energy projects. This article explores the key clauses typically found in PPAs and their legal considerations.

Definitions and Interpretations

The Definitions and Interpretations clause is foundational to the PPA. It ensures that all parties have a clear and mutual understanding of the terms used throughout the agreement. This clause typically includes definitions for key terms such as “Delivered Energy,” “Tariff,” “Force Majeure,” and “Termination Compensation.” Precise definitions help prevent disputes by eliminating ambiguities and ensuring that all parties interpret the contract consistently.

Effectiveness, Term of the Agreement, and Lock-In Period

This section addresses the commencement and duration of the PPA. The agreement usually becomes effective upon the fulfillment of certain conditions precedent, such as obtaining regulatory approvals and financial closure. The term of the agreement, often ranging from 15 to 25 years, reflects the long-term nature of renewable energy projects. The lock-in period, during which neither party can terminate the agreement without incurring penalties, provides stability and financial security for investors and lenders. This clause ensures the project’s longevity and financial viability.

Construction of the Project

The Construction of the Project clause outlines the obligations related to the development and completion of the renewable energy project. It includes detailed timelines, milestones, and penalties for delays. Ensuring timely completion is crucial for meeting energy delivery commitments. This clause also specifies quality standards and compliance with technical specifications and regulatory requirements. Adequate provisions for construction ensure that the project is built to the necessary standards and can operate efficiently once completed.

Sale and Purchase of Delivered Energy

This clause specifies the quantity of energy to be sold and purchased, including any minimum or maximum thresholds. It establishes the seller’s obligation to deliver and the buyer’s obligation to purchase the energy generated by the project. This provision ensures a reliable and predictable flow of electricity, aligning the expectations and responsibilities of both parties. It also includes provisions for scheduling and dispatching the energy, ensuring that both parties can plan their operations accordingly.

Tariffs and Charges

The Tariffs and Charges clause determines the pricing structure for the energy supplied. It can be a fixed rate, an escalating rate, or a rate linked to specific indices such as inflation or fuel prices. The clause should also address any additional charges, such as wheeling charges or grid usage fees. A well-defined tariff structure is crucial for financial planning and stability, ensuring that the project remains economically viable over its lifetime.

Invoicing and Payment

This section outlines the procedures for invoicing and payment. It specifies the billing cycle, payment due dates, and the currency for transactions. Timely and accurate invoicing is essential for maintaining cash flow and ensuring that the seller receives payments as per the agreed schedule. The clause may also include provisions for late payments, interest on overdue amounts, and dispute resolution mechanisms for payment-related issues.

Delivery Point and Metering System

The Delivery Point and Metering System clause defines where the energy will be delivered and how it will be measured. The metering system should be accurate and compliant with industry standards to ensure transparency and accountability in the measurement of energy delivered. This is critical for accurate billing and dispute resolution. The clause also addresses the responsibilities for installing, maintaining, and testing the metering equipment.

General Covenants

General covenants are commitments made by both parties to adhere to certain standards and behaviors. This might include maintaining necessary licenses, complying with laws and regulations, and not engaging in activities that could harm the project. These covenants are vital for maintaining the integrity and smooth operation of the agreement. They ensure that both parties act in good faith and support the project’s success.

Representations and Warranties

This clause contains the assertions made by both parties about their legal authority, the condition of the project, and their ability to perform the obligations under the PPA. Representations and warranties provide a level of assurance and are often a precondition for financing. They help to mitigate risks by ensuring that each party is fully capable of fulfilling their contractual duties. Misrepresentation or breach of warranties can lead to significant legal and financial consequences.


The Assignment clause specifies the conditions under which the PPA or its benefits and obligations can be transferred to another party. This is particularly important in scenarios involving project financing or changes in ownership. Restrictions on assignment ensure that the agreement’s terms are upheld even if the parties change. This clause also protects the interests of the remaining party by preventing unwanted or unsuitable parties from taking over the contract.

Force Majeure

This clause defines events that constitute force majeure, such as natural disasters, war, or other unforeseen events that prevent the parties from fulfilling their obligations. It outlines the procedures for notification, mitigation, and the consequences of such events. Force majeure provisions protect both parties from liability in cases of extraordinary circumstances beyond their control. This clause also ensures that the parties take reasonable steps to mitigate the effects of force majeure events.

Change in Law

The Change in Law clause addresses how changes in legislation or regulations will affect the PPA. It typically includes provisions for adjusting tariffs or other terms to mitigate the financial impact of such changes. This clause ensures that the agreement remains fair and viable despite shifts in the regulatory environment. It provides a mechanism for both parties to renegotiate the terms if there are significant changes in the legal or regulatory framework that affect the project.

Events of Default and Termination

This section lists the events that constitute a default under the PPA and the remedies available to the non-defaulting party. It includes procedures for curing defaults and the rights of termination. Clear definitions of default events and termination rights protect the interests of both parties and provide mechanisms for resolving breaches. This clause is critical for managing risks and ensuring that both parties have recourse if the other party fails to meet their obligations.

Termination Compensation

If the PPA is terminated prematurely, this clause outlines the compensation due to the affected party. Termination compensation is crucial for protecting investments and ensuring that parties are not left financially disadvantaged by early termination. It provides a financial safety net and incentivizes adherence to the agreement terms. This clause ensures that the party not at fault is adequately compensated for any losses incurred due to the premature termination of the agreement.

Dispute Resolution

This clause establishes the methods for resolving disputes, often preferring arbitration over litigation due to its speed and confidentiality. It specifies the governing law, venue, and procedural rules for dispute resolution. Effective dispute resolution mechanisms ensure that conflicts are managed efficiently, minimizing disruption to the project. This clause is essential for maintaining a working relationship between the parties and ensuring that any disputes are resolved in a fair and timely manner.

Indemnities and Limitation of Liability

Indemnity clauses protect parties from losses arising from specific events or actions. Limitation of liability clauses cap the amount of damages one party can claim from the other. These provisions manage risk and ensure that liabilities are proportionate and predictable. Indemnities provide financial protection against third-party claims, while limitation of liability clauses ensure that neither party is exposed to unlimited financial risks.

Anti-Corruption Laws

This clause ensures that both parties comply with applicable anti-corruption laws. It includes representations that no improper payments have been made or will be made in connection with the agreement. Compliance with anti-corruption laws is essential for maintaining the legal and ethical integrity of the project. This clause helps to prevent corruption and ensures that the project is conducted in a transparent and lawful manner.


The Miscellaneous section covers additional provisions that do not fit into other clauses. This might include notices, confidentiality, amendments, and counterparts. These provisions ensure that all aspects of the agreement are covered, providing a complete and enforceable contract. The clause also addresses the procedures for making amendments to the PPA, ensuring that any changes are agreed upon by both parties and properly documented.


Navigating the legal landscape of PPAs for renewable energy projects in India involves a thorough understanding of each clause and its implications. Properly drafted PPAs are essential for mitigating risks, ensuring compliance, and securing financing. By addressing these legal considerations comprehensively, stakeholders can promote the successful development and operation of renewable energy projects, contributing to India’s sustainable energy future.  

PPAs serve as a vital tool in the renewable energy sector, offering a structured framework for the sale and purchase of electricity. They provide the necessary legal and financial assurances to all parties involved, fostering a stable and predictable environment for renewable energy investments. Understanding and negotiating the key clauses of a PPA effectively can lead to successful project implementation and long-term sustainability, aligning with India’s goals for renewable energy development and environmental stewardship.

Contributed by – Mukund Gupta

King Stubb & Kasiva,
Advocates & Attorneys

Click Here to Get in Touch

New Delhi | Mumbai | Bangalore | Chennai | Hyderabad | Mangalore | Pune | Kochi
Tel: +91 11 41032969 | Email: