BP Solar capacity falls


BP Solar has reported a production capacity decline for the fourth quarter of 2008. The reasons for this were a combination of the running down and expected closure of its 50MW photovoltaic cell and module manufacturing plant in Australia, as well as a fire at its joint venture production plant in India, Tata BP Solar. BP detailed the production disruption and decline in MW capacity in its latest quarterly financial filings.

Nominal capacity in the third quarter of 2008 was 277MW, but fell to 213MW in the fourth quarter, due in particular to the fire at Tata BP Solar plant, which disrupted production. Nominal capacity in 2008 was therefore below 4Q07 levels of 228MW, indicating an overall decline in MW capacity in 2008.

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BP Solar is currently transitioning to larger scale production plants to reduce costs as the competitive landscape intensifies. BP Solar is adding significant new capacity in the coming years with new large-scale plants currently under construction or in early ramp mode in Spain.

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