Photovoltaic cell demand will reach 20.4GW in 2011 -

A report from SolarBuzz has forecast demand for photovoltaic (PV) solar cells will rise to 20.4 GW in 2011, while expectations for 2010 have risen following a good performance in the third quarter of 2010 (Q3 10).

Global photovoltaic demand amounted to 4.GW in Q3 10, representing a rise of 107 percent from the previous year, with total industry revenues up 74 percent from last year to $17.9 billion.

According to the SolarBuzz figures 10.6GW of photovoltaics were installed in the first nine months of 2010, meaning that the industry is well on course for a record year.  This has meant that forecasts for the year overall have been raised to 16.3GW for 2010, 117 percent growth from 2009.

The report also showed that Chinese manufacturers accounted for 51 percent of global shipments during the third quarter of this year, a rise from 47 percent in the same quarter for the previous year.  Chinese and Taiwanese manufacturers were dominant overall with eight out of the top twelve manufacturer positions being taken up by firms from these countries.

China-based firm JA Solar took the lead in solar cell shipments with an 8 percent market share in Q3 10, while Suntech Power and First Solar took second and third positions.

SolarBuzz has forecast a global PV market of 20.4GW in 2011 which represents a slowdown in growth rate of around 25 percent. This is thought to be due to policy changes in Germany and the Czech Republic which will begin to take effect at the beginning of the year.

“The large price reductions of 2009 created the platform for spectacular growth in 2010,” said Craig Stevens, president at Solarbuzz. “However, manufacturers plan strong capacity and shipment growth in 2011.  This will encourage prices to drop, but they will need to fall further than incentive tariffs in key world markets to maintain strong growth next year.”