China comes top on Ernst & Young’s renewable energy index but US takes crown for solar index

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China has scored the highest on Ernst & Young’s country attractiveness indices (CAI) index for February 2013.

The index scores 40 countries on the attractiveness of their renewable energy markets, energy infrastructure and the suitability for individual technologies and is based on several further indexes which have been broken down into an all renewables index (ARI), a wind index, a solar index, a biomass / other index, a geo-thermal index and an infrastructure index.

Marked out of 100, China scored 70.1 in the ARI, followed by Germany with 65.6, the US with 64.9, India with 61.8 and France with 57.3.

However, on the solar index, the US scored top with a score of 70 whilst China and India came joint second with a score of 65, followed by Germany and Japan in joint third with 61 points.

Although China did not come first in this index, Ernst & Young notes that China has risen one point following the announcement of government subsidies for some 2.9GW of projects under the country’s Golden Sun Program.

In early January, the National Energy Administration (NEA) announced that China intends to install around 10GW of solar capacity in 2013. Ernst & Young notes that China is driving domestic renewable energy growth to help it get through a challenging period of consolidation, grid constraints and protectionism.

Indeed, the finance firm believes that increased domestic targets and outbound investment, which are often backed by the state-run China Development Bank, are helping to “prop up the country’s clean energy sector, as Chinese companies pursue opportunities to bundle finance and equipment packages for projects in Latin America, MENA and Australia”.

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