Japan could strip FiT for a quarter of approved clean energy pipeline

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on email
Roughly 26% of clean energy project capacity and 14.5% of individual projects certified before July last year could be affected. Source: Flickr/Caribb.

Japan may remove feed-in tariff (FiT) support for a significant number of clean energy projects certified before July last year, because they missed a deadline to secure grid access, according to provisional estimates from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI).

Out of the 3.15 million clean energy projects with a combined total of 106.5GW capacity that had secured approval for the subsidy by the end of June 2016, an estimated 456,000 projects with a combined capacity of 27.7GW have missed the 1 April deadline and could soon lose access to this support mechanism.

This means roughly 26% of certified capacity and 14.5% of individual projects could be affected.

However, projects that received certification after 1 July 2016 still have nine months to secure grid access.

In March, Toshimitsu Fujiki, a director at METI, announced that Japan would be lowering its FiT payments once again, while a multi-gigawatt pipeline of unbuilt large-scale PV projects would be cancelled and lose their rights to the FiT at the beginning of April.

Some 57GW of large-scale PV projects were registered for the FiT in the first two or three years of the scheme’s introduction after 2012, with would-be developers taking advantage of relatively relaxed rules on what constituted a project’s planning documents.

While the industry boomed, multiple non-PV firms also entered the industry and put forward plans to build facilities. In some cases it has been suspected that after taking the rights to build solar farms at FiT rates of as much as ¥42/kWh (US$0.38), developers have intentionally waited for equipment prices to keep dropping to maximise their profits.

The METI release on Friday said thats its certification system had led to a large number of unbuilt projects, hence its policy to bring in the 1 April deadline.

Last year, the Japanese government paid out ¥2.3 trillion in tariffs.

Read Next

July 13, 2021
Solar PV capacity in Asia Pacific could triple to 1,500GW by 2030, with China driving deployment and Indonesia set to be the region’s fastest-growing market, according to Wood Mackenzie.
June 30, 2021
Japan’s eighth solar auction, for projects with a generation capacity of more than 250kW, has closed with bidders securing a total of 208MW.
PV Tech Premium
May 10, 2021
Andy Colthorpe takes a look at what’s happening and what’s expected to happen in the Japanese large-scale PV market, with data and analysis courtesy of RTS Corporation and interviews with Vena Energy Japan, Sonnedix Japan and Baywa Japan.
May 7, 2021
German agriculture group BayWa has said its renewables business saw an “unusually strong” start to the year, driven by high demand for solar modules and the sale of a PV plant in Japan.
February 17, 2021
Canadian Solar has raised JPY22 billion (US$208 million) for its Japan Green Infrastructure Fund (JGIF), which will develop and accumulate solar projects in the Asian country.
February 1, 2021
Panasonic has announced plans to withdraw from manufacturing heterojunction (HJT) cells and modules with the closure of its manufacturing plants in Malaysia and Shimane Prefecture, Japan.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
August 19, 2021
At 9am (PT) | 6pm (CEST)
Solar Media Events
August 25, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 19, 2021