IDC Energy Insights has released its findings for the PV module market over the next four years. The firm’s encouraging figures are forecasting that on a global scale, PV module shipments will rise from their current 22.7GW level (2011) to 43.8GW in 2015.
This rise, coupled with the ongoing decline in module prices, greatly revised subsidies in some markets and adoption of aggressive targets by large markets like China and India, means an interesting few years ahead for the PV industry.
Unpredictable government decisions regarding subsidies and policy could well be a major disadvantage for some countries, but the emergence of several multi-gigawatt markets means that these governmental decisions will have a minimal effect on the global PV industry as a whole.
IDC Energy Insights’ Worldwide Quarterly Photovoltaic Module Tracker report also claims that a major shift in the global market rankings is underway. The Asia/Pacific region – including Japan – looks on track to grow from 22.9% of global module shipments in 2011 to 49.3% in 2015. And Europe, recipient of around 66.4% of PV shipments in 2011, will decline to a mere 38.7% in 2015.
“Over the past year China has moved its solar energy target from 5GW in 2015 to 10GW, and there is discussion that the next five-year plan set to publish in 2012 will again raise the bar,” said Ryan Reith, program manager, IDC Energy Insights Tracker products.
“While Chinese solar manufacturers have been feeling the heat about the generous state loans they have been given access to, which many believe is a cause for the rapidly declining module prices, the notion that a great domestic opportunity lies ahead is unquestioned,” he continued. “The fact that seven out of the top 11 module manufacturers are Chinese companies means the fight for domestic projects will undoubtedly be a good one.”