NewEnergyNews: ONE THIRD OF WORLD SOLAR PV TO CHINA

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    Friday, February 08, 2013

    ONE THIRD OF WORLD SOLAR PV TO CHINA

    China Consumes 33% of Global Photovoltaic Panel Shipments in Q4’12, According to NPD Solarbuzz; Solar PV manufacturers need localized strategies to deal with contrasting supply and demand from China

    January 22, 2013 (SolarBuzz)

    “The Chinese end-market dominated shipments of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels during the final quarter of 2012 with 33% of global end-market demand, according to new research [from SolarBuzz]…Several factors are contributing to China’s rise, including slowing growth in Europe with declining PV incentives and strong domestic policies within China…

    “Global solar PV demand increased to 8.3 GW during Q4’12, providing the characteristic year-end surge…[but] the shift during 2012 in year-end demand from Europe to China has presented a new set of challenges for the PV industry…[because the] Chinese end-market has different module supplier preferences, pricing expectations, and routes to market…[T]hreatened by the impact of global trade barriers, the biggest challenge will fall on Chinese manufacturers that are restricted to domestic demand…”

    “Chinese demand continues to be heavily back-end weighted. In 2012, Q4’12 demand in China accounted for almost 60% of annual demand…[T]his demand phasing provides a significant dilemma for suppliers as they struggle to balance the rewards of year-end shipments with the risks from rising inventories and potential write-downs earlier in the year.

    “…[I]t was only during Q4’12 that PV manufacturers’ inventories declined. This occurred precisely because of year-end demand from China, allowing module shipments to exceed factory production levels. As a result, module inventory levels at PV manufacturers declined by 4% Q/Q in Q4’12, to a year-end low of 65 days…”

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