Solar market to grow 75% by 2019, report says.
Lux Research: China to lead surge in installations ahead of Americas.
The solar market will average over 8% annual growth through 2019 despite new challenges such as trade disputes with China and changes in global policy, according to a new report.
China became the biggest solar market in the world last year with 11.8 GWp installations, and has been key to a faster-than-expected global recovery, says Lux Research.
Since the competitive bankruptcy-ridden cost environment of 2012, module supplier margins have increased, with most Tier-1 suppliers topping 10% toward the end of 2013 and 15% in the first quarter of 2014, the report says.
“With solar now fairly common in most parts of the world, it reaps the rewards of direct incentives but also faces uncertainty due to pressure on trade activity with China,” said Matthew Feinstein, Lux Research Senior Analyst and the lead author of the report titled, Solar Market Size Update 2014: Reform for the Long Haul.
“Furthermore, as an increasingly commonplace electricity source, most major markets are dealing with some combination of these dynamics, complicating the status of policy globally,” he added.
Growth in the Americas will be fastest over the period, at 16.3% per year, as its new installations market nearly triples from 5.3 GWp in 2013 to 15.4 GWp in 2019, the report says.
The United States will pace the rest of the Americas, growing from 4.7 GWp to 11.7 GWp but South America will grow 10-fold to 2.5 GWp in 2019, it adds.
Asia-Pacific will grow at a lower 8.2% but will account for over 50% of global demand, led by China, Japan and other emerging markets.
Incremental increases in efficiency will lead to a 20% cut in total system costs, the report also found.
Crystalline silicon (x-Si), with a 85% market share, will continue to dominate the solar market through 2019 even though other module technologies have the potential to become major threats in the future.
They include copper iridium gallium diselenide (CIGS), copper zinc tinc sulfide (CZTS), cadmium telluride (CdTe) and thin, flexible, epitaxial silicon (epi-Si) have the potential to become major threats in the future.