- AECEA believes solar PV demand in China in 2022 could grow by 45% to 63% annually to reach between 80 GW to 90 GW
- Main drivers of the increase will be the 1st batch of GW bases the country is planning and residential solar among others
- Moving on from high prices and short supply of polysilicon in 2021, solar industry may be looking at a supply crunch for EVA in 2022
After China Photovoltaic Industry Association (CPIA), Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BloombergNEF) and China Electricity Council (CEC), now Asia Europe Clean Energy (Solar) Advisory Co Ltd (AECEA) has joins them in forecasting Chinese solar demand in 2022 to settle between 80 GW to 90 GW (see Up To 90 GW New Solar In China In 2022).
The market intelligence firm AECEA led by Frank Haugwitz expects annual Chinese installations this year to grow by 45% to 63% annually. In its latest briefing paper for the Chinese market, AECEA said, “Main drivers will be projects part of the 1st batch of ‘GW-Bases’, regular ground mounted utility projects subject to guaranteed grid connection, DG-PV, notably residential PV potentially reaching 30-35 GW and to a lesser extent so-called ‘market-oriented’ projects.”
In February 2022, the National Energy Administration (NEA) and the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) released the 2nd batch of large-scale GW-bases comprising wind and solar energy with a total capacity of 455 GW to be realized by 2030, says AECEA.
Under the nation’s 14th Five-Year Plan (2021 to 2025), 24 out of total 31 provinces and autonomous regions plan to deploy between 375 GW to 420 GW of solar PV, amounting to 75 GW to 84 GW annually during the 5-year period. AECEA said the official national plan is currently under review. During the 1st year of the period, the country installed over 54 GW in 2021.
The plan also aims to deploy over 50 GW of BIPV/BAPV solar capacity by 2025 at a national level which is another boost for solar (see China Targets 50 GW BIPV/BAPV By 2025). And then there are local governments planning their own solar targets locally, for instance Ningbo city administration in Zhejiang wants 90% of all new buildings to have solar rooftop system by 2025.
Among all other renewables, solar PV seems to be positively placed to grow as Haugwitz points out, “Taking current policy targets, project backlogs and newly approved projects into account, 2022 could be the very year that solar PV may surpass in each case hydropower and wind in terms of cumulative installations.”
During January 2022, the country deployed around 7 GW of new solar PV capacity already, as per AECEA, thanks mainly to some December 2021 projects coming online.
Module prices were elevated in the previous year, upsetting the global solar market, and AECEA seems to think the trend will persist in 2022 in the near future with the current average prices at around RMB 1.88 to $1.92 per W. However, it is the EVA pricing that should concern players in the industry. “By all accounts, existing global EVA production capacities could reach 950-1050 k/t, allowing to manufacture an estimated 210 GW, suggesting a tight supply situation in light of the 2022 estimated global demand to date,” warns Haugwitz.