Solar installations will decline in 2012 - US research group

05 April 2012 19:32  [Source: ICIS news]

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (ICIS)--Solar installations worldwide will grind to a halt this year after explosive growth in 2011, according to a report on Thursday by US-based Lux Research.

Solar installations in 2012 will add 0.4 gigawatt (GW), while industry revenues drop to $92bn (€70bn) in 2012 from $110bn in 2011, the report said.

New installations are expected to rebound to 38.3 GW in 2017 as the industry learns to navigate a global market fast losing its subsidies, according to the report.

“Opportunities remain and extended success is possible for stakeholders, but the market’s shifting geographic profile - combined with a forced withdrawal from subsidy addiction - means strategic, surgical moves are needed,” said Matthew Feinstein, Lux Research analyst and author of the report.

A supply glut, caused mainly by Chinese manufacturers, speculation of incentive cuts in Europe and the end of the 1603 Cash Grant in the US, fuelled the sharp growth in installations last year, according to the report.

The 1603 Cash Grant in the US was a government program incentivizing renewable energy.

Lux Research analysts expect south Asia to account for the majority of growth, rising from 1 GW in 2011 to 4.5 GW in 2017.

Africa and South America are expected to be the expansion capitals from 2017 to 2022, the report said.

The report said the utility-scale application segment will grow in large emerging markets like China, as conditions favour fewer, larger-scale projects that allow more control over financing and regulatory factors.

Global solar markets will still see strong downward price pressure amid oversupply, the report said.

Asian manufacturers of solar panels are significantly curbing production, faced with waning demand in the financially struggling Europe, according to analysts in Asia.

Major producers in China, India and other countries still have voluminous inventories, and are forced to slash prices to reduce stocks, they said.

Plastic parts made of polyamide 12 (PA12) are components in the photovoltaic industry. Polysilicon is also used as a feedstock in solar panel production.

($1 = €0.76)

By: Leela Landress
+1 713 525 2653

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