IHS issues 2014 predictions for the solar PV energy industry

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Following on from recent projections for the PV industry, market research firm IHS has revealed key developments and issues for the sector in 2014.

The market research firm reiterated its recent growth forecast for the industry next year, expecting global PV installations to be in the range of 40GW to 45GW, which was based on a bottom-up analysis of more than 100 countries, according to IHS.

“After two years of a punishing downturn, the global solar industry is on the rebound,” said Ash Sharma, senior research director for solar at IHS. “Worldwide PV installations are set to rise by double digits in 2014, solar manufacturing capital spending is recovering, module prices are stabilising and emerging markets are on the rise. However, challenges remain, including changes in government incentives and policy, an ongoing backlash to the rapid rise of renewables and razor-thin margins throughout the solar value chain.”

Interestingly, IHS has made some significant revisions to its regional forecasts for 2013 that differ with country breakdowns for the Top 10 markets revealed at the PV Fab Managers Forum in March, 2013.

At that time, IHS forecasted that China would lead global installations of 6.3GW, while its forecast in December 2013 puts installations in the country at a projected 8.6GW.

However, the biggest revision is Japan. IHS forecasted earlier this year that Japan would become the fourth largest market with installations expected to top 3.5GW. In its latest forecast, Japan is expected to install 6.3GW and become the second largest market to China.

Other key changes include Germany, which was previously expected to install around 5.1GW in 2013, yet the revised forecast projects only 3.8GW to be installed, though this is still higher than the 2.5GW the German Government had wanted to control via FiT changes.

IHS had also slashed its installation figures for India from 2GW previously to just 1.2GW.

Despite the country-by-country revisions, global PV installations are still expected to reach around 35GW in 2013.

Key predictions for 2014

• PV energy storage systems (PVESS) will amount to 753MW, up from 192MW in 2013.
• PV module ASPs to decline 10%. ASP decline of 40% in 2020 compared to 2013.
• Capital spending to increase 42% and reach US$3.3 billion.
• PV installations in Latin America to reach 1.4 GW, up from 300MW in 2013.
• PV inverter shipments to increase 13% to 41GW, with revenue of US$1.8 billion.
• China not expected to reach targeted 8GW of distributed (DG) PV installations.
• 700MW of unsubsidised PV to be developed worldwide.

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