660GW of solar PV deployments expected in 2024 – Bernreuter Research

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Bernreuter predicts that between 600GW and 660GW of solar PV will be deployed this year. Image: Trina Solar

660GW of solar PV capacity will be deployed in 2024 as market demand responds to sustained low module prices, according to polysilicon market researcher Bernreuter Research.

Based on the shipment targets of the six major solar manufacturers – namely JinkoSolar, LONGi, Trina, JA Solar, Tongwei and Canadian Solar – Bernreuter predicts that between 600GW and 660GW of solar PV will be deployed this year.

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These companies have average shipment increase targets of 40% in 2024, the research says, which would translate directly to 622GW of new capacity based on the 444GW of capacity deployed in 2023. A new report today from SolarPower Europe found that 447GW of new solar capacity was added globally last year, an increase of 87% compared with 2022.

Crucially, Bernreuter Research’s prediction hinges on the ongoing low prices of solar modules globally. Many manufacturers have faced difficulties in the last year as prices have plummeted across the supply chain and manufacturing capacity has been far in excess of global demand. In March this year, the Chairman of LONGi eventually called on the Chinese government to crack down on “unreasonably low” module prices to create a more sustainable model.

Johannes Bernreuter, head of Bernreuter Research, said: “Once market participants come to the conclusion that the crash of the solar module price has reached its bottom, demand will accelerate.

“Even if the leading players gain market share as Tier-2 and Tier-3 manufacturers struggle in the current low-price environment, it is likely that new PV installations will exceed 600 GWdc this year.”

In November 2023, Bernreuter predicted a “shakeout” in the polysilicon market as, following drastic overcapacity, big players consolidate the market and smaller or newer participants struggle or are pushed out altogether. This dynamic has rippled downstream to the module manufacturing industry.

The current price dynamics for solar manufacturing have made an already volume-based industry even more reliant on low-cost, high-volume production. Coupled with the current overcapacity in the market, some questions have been raised over the ability of smaller manufacturers, newer companies or new markets looking to establish solar production capacity to sustain operations.  This was explored in the cover feature for the Q1 2024 edition of our downstream journal, PV Tech Power.

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