Local solar policies could provide China with the necessary momentum to hit national deployment targets this year after the country missed its ambitious 2014 goals, according to analyst firm IHS.
China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) is eyeing 15GW of solar this year with 7GW of distributed solar of which 3.15GW would be ground-mounted.
Ash Sharma, IHS said the market was well able to reach 15GW.
“Overall, these targets seem quite reasonable, and close enough to our forecast – 15GW, including 4.1GW from building-mount applications,” he told PV Tech in an emailed statement. “To achieve 15GW, the government only needs to keep current incentives and release the long-expected renewable portfolio standard (RPS) policy. Announcements about national feed-in tariff (FiT) reduction plans and the release of more local incentives will be additional drivers of growth.”
The China Daily newspaper reported last month that the RPS was awaiting approval by the State Council and is expected to be released in the first quarter of 2015.
In terms of 2014 deployment, Sharma warned that figures from the NEA should not be considered final. The NEA said grid connections totalling 10.5GW had been carried out in 2014. Although it may not be far off the mark, Sharma said that the official figure is not yet final.
He said that in addition to the grid connection data, “the NEA also released a non-public notice to all provinces and asked them to check how much exactly was connected in 2014, because their statistics do not match with numbers from grid companies.
“These being said, IHS tracks PV installations in MWdc, rather than grid connections typically, in MWac, which will result in difference in both timing and MW values. IHS’ latest estimate for China installations in 2014 was about 12-12.5 GW, similar to 10GWac,” Sharma added.