US firm First Solar has secured a US$33 million loan facility from Japan’s Mizuho Bank in order to fund the construction of utility-scale solar plants in Japan.
The financing will enable First Solar to pursue its development pipeline in the country, for which it is to consult with Japanese construction firms. last year the company revealed it had a 250MW project pipeline in Japan.
First Solar said the loan facility was evidence of the company’s “strong commitment” to Japan’s PV industry and Jack Curtis, Asia Pacific regional manager at First Solar, said it would enhance the country’s “ongoing efforts to reduce its dependency on imported fossil fuels”.
“Mizuho Bank’s support for First Solar’s project development is expected to encourage further participation with more private investments in the PV utility-scale solar sector in Japan,” Curtis added.
First Solar’s standing Japan’s PV market goes as far back as 2013 when it pledged to invest up US$100 million in the market to build utility-scale solar both directly and in partnership with domestic enterprises.
In August First Solar issued guidance that its PV shipments would almost double to between 2.8 and 2.9GW for this year on the back substantial new and potential new bookings, leading management to warn that it was virtually sold-out for the rest of the year.