Etrion and Hitachi Hi-Tech to partner on Japan utility-scale PV projects

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Independent solar power producer Etrion has become the latest company to state its intention to become involved in the Japanese utility scale PV market, after announcing a strategic partnership with Hitachi High Technologies Corporation.

The partnership agreement will cover the development, financing, construction, ownership and operation of utility scale solar power plants in Japan.

Etrion, headquartered in Switzerland, signed the development agreement with the Hitachi subsidiary after the two companies worked together for over a year to form a joint development team. Etrion announced that the two companies intend to develop a pipeline of projects that are under construction or ready to begin construction totalling 100MWp by the end of 2015. The first project under the partnership is expected to begin construction during this year.

According to Etrion, the two companies combined will be able to provide the full range of necessary functions to develop and construct plants, including meeting local content rules, engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) expertise, good relationships with utility companies and banks, access to non-recourse project finance and operations, maintenance and asset management services.

Etrion chief executive officer Marco A Northland said: “We are extending the range of our partners to position Etrion as a global platform for growth. Etrion is honored to partner with Hitachi Hi-Tech and sees this as a key relationship for success in Japan and other Asian markets.”

Other non-Japanese companies have recently announced similar partnerships and intentions to expand into the Japanese utility-scale PV project market including Germany’s Belectric, which will partner with Japanese thin-film maker Solar Frontier to target the country’s ‘mega-solar’ market. Canadian Solar recently also signed a multi-million dollar loan deal to develop 145MW of projects in Japan.

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