Despite the current economic gloom, Saxony-Anhalt in Germany continues to be a key attraction for industries, not least the solar industry. At a recent conference, held in Berlin, it was noted by Prime Minister Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Bohmer and the Minister for Economic Affairs Dr. Reiner Haseloff that more than €9 billion had been invested in the region from international investors since 1991. The result was the direct creation of over 36,000 jobs.
Often cited as the ‘Solar Valley,’ the region has provided solar manufacturers with consistently attractive incentives as well as access to university R&D facilities and a skilled workforce, both of which are critical for the industry to succeed.
At Intersolar Munich last week, Saxony-Anhalt was voted as the ‘Best region for manufacturing solar technologies’ at the inaugural ‘Cell Award’ event. Both industry experts and several thousand online voters selected the region as the first recipient of this award category.
Judges comments on why Saxony-Anhalt was selected as a finalist noted the scheme helped to strengthen the core of German PV industry as well as now having a strong cluster of PV companies due to the workforce and strong local and regional marketplace with attractive subsidies and incentives.
Due to the longstanding and successful feed-in-tariff system in the country, Germany is expected to remain a major market for the solar industry with estimates from market research firm EuPD that 2 GW of modules will be installed in Germany in 2009. Importantly, Germany is expected to continue to attract industry investment, especially as the private rooftop market is projected to reach 99GWp before saturation.
Caption: Dorrit Koebke-Friedrich, Senior Manager of IMG Saxony Anhalt receives the award for Best Region for Manufacturing Solar Technologies for the Solar Valley, Germany from Nick Sarno, Senior Vice President of Manufacturing for LDK Solar.