While the demand in Europe is on the rise, European manufacturers are having trouble remaining cost competitive by producing in Europe, according to Lux Research’s latest Solar Supply Tracker.
Norway-based cell manufacturer Renewable Energy Corp. (REC), as an example, has reduced production at two of its facilities in Norway by about 400 MW in the past two months while it continues its production at full capacity in Singapore. Module prices are at a record low with major manufacturers selling around ~$1/W to burn through their inventories. While this price is unsustainable, it makes cost competition cut-throat.
The top 10 companies, which make up 44 percent of global production, include some of the Chinese crystalline silicon cell manufacturing giants, such as Suntech, Yingli and Trina. Neo Solar Power, which is a Taiwanese cell manufacturer, entered the top 10 for the first time with 3 percent of global production.
According to Fatima Toor, Lux Research analyst who led the Solar Supply Tracker: “The Asian share in cell manufacturing will continue to rise and go >50 percent, even though risks of trade disputes and tariffs loom in the western hemisphere. Moreover, polysilicon production has shifted to Asia during the last quarter while module production had already shifted to Asia in late 2010.”
Source: Lux Research, USA.