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Electronics Production | January 18, 2012

Tough times for solar

An analyst at IHS iSuppli says there is significant overcapacity in the current photovoltaics industry, with demand in solar systems expected to decrease in 2012.
Henning Wicht, Director and Principal Analyst Photovoltaics at IHS iSuppli, will be speaking at the Fab Managers Forum from 25-27 March 2012, hosted by the Semi PV group. The forum will focus on various trends in the Photovoltaics industry.

"The production capacity (in the Photovoltaics industry) is currently twice as high as the demand. This may result in difficulties for some companies. The decisive factor will be whether the companies will manage to optimize their cost structures, fully utilize their plants and consequently reduce the unit cost," Wicht said in a release by Semi PV.

Like most analysts, Wicht expects demand to decrease in 2012 - with slight growth showing in the USA. "Throughout Europe, we are expecting between 10 to 13 gigawatts. Growth markets are the USA with roughly 3 gigawatts and China, which will install 3 to 4 gigawatts."

Of course the answer to this problem is to find new markets. Wicht expects this to happen, but the results won't show until 2013.

" In 2012, solar companies will increasingly tap into new markets to generate further sales for their production capacities. However, these measures will not be reflected in the sales volume before 2013. Therefore, the major demand for modules will remain in the established markets in 2012 as well".

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