Solar project and systems integrator S.A.G. Solarstrom has raised concerns over the negative impact that the changes to the German feed-in tariff will have on German-based PV module manufacturers and installers. The company noted that the cuts will quickly lead to job losses as demand slows and low-cost China-based producers gain additional market share as competition intensifies on weaker demand. The lower prices required to provide adequate financial returns for customers will benefit Chinese producers over German manufacturers, especially in the former East German states, where jobs creation is hardest and unemployment benefits are the most prevalent.
“That would be very short-sighted–it is precisely in these states that an implementation of the plans would foolishly jeopardize the market position we have achieved and thus put many jobs on the line,” noted Dr. Karl Kuhlmann, S.A.G. Solarstrom’s CEO. “There is bound to be a slowdown in rooftop systems in Germany as well. We are well-positioned internationally, so that we can compensate for this with our sales in other countries.”
Kuhlmann also criticised the way subsidies for renewable energies has been assessed.
“It’s always argued that by 2020 around €57 billion will have been spent on support in the area of renewable energies. However, it should be born in mind that around 20 cents per kWh are incurred in indirect costs for the conventional sources of energy, according to reliable estimates,” he added.
This spending was claimed to cover less than 3% of the economic costs incurred during the same period for conventional energy, which Kuhlmann claimed that the economic costs deferred to our descendants still amount to €120 billion per year.