InfoLink Consulting shows Chinese solar module demand in January 2023 and February 2023, basis China customs data.
InfoLink Consulting shows Chinese solar module demand in January 2023 and February 2023, basis China customs data.

Europe Imported 17 GW Chinese Modules In 2M/2023

Demand For Chinese Solar Modules Stays Strong In 2M/2023 As Europe Continues Its Reliance On Asian Giant
  • China exported 14.85 GW solar modules in January 2023 and 14.82 GW in February 2023
  • Europe accounted for 17 GW, growing its demand 77% annually for Chinese modules
  • BCD impact negatively impacted Indian demand in Asia Pacific while the rest of Asia Pacific increased demand by 27% YoY

Having imported 86.6 GW solar modules from China in 2022, the largest for any geographical region last year, Europe continues to be the Asian giant's largest overseas market procuring 17 GW during 2M/2023, again the largest volume compared to the rest, according to Chinese customs data studied by InfoLink Consulting (see China Exported 154.8 GW Solar Modules In 2022).

In the month of January 2023, China exported 14.85 GW solar modules reflecting an annual increase of 32% MoM and 55% YoY. In February 2023, the export volume added up to 14.82 GW, almost flat on monthly basis and a jump of 6% YoY. Previously, China Photovoltaic Industry Association (CPIA) said China exported 29.3 GW solar modules in the 2 reported months (see China Exported $8.6 Billion PV Products in 2M/2023).

In January 2023, Europe imported 8.6 GW modules from China reflecting an annual increase of 120%, followed by 48% improvement in February 2023 with 8.4 GW. Altogether, this 17 GW was an annual growth of 77%. Considering the continent purchased 86.6 GW in 2022 and installed over 41 GW, InfoLink believes Europe still has an inventory of about 20 GW to 30 GW.

Asia Pacific's Chinese imports for the 2 reported months were 2.5 GW and 3.1 GW or an increase of 17% and 24% MoM but a decline of -13% and -47% YoY. It was mainly India's Basic Customs Duty (BCD) imposed since April 1, 2022 that had the severest impact. Of the 8.9 GW imported by India from China last year, 8.1 GW were shipped before April 2022.

India has now imported 395 MW in January 2023 and 643 MW in February 2023 from China. Barring India, Chinese modules enjoyed 27% annual growth in exports due to Japan, Australia, Pakistan and other Southeast Asian nations.

The Americas imported 2.6 GW and 1.9 GW in the 2 respective months of 2023 with Brazil importing 1.9 GW and 1.3 GW. Beyond Brazil, Colombia and Chile were the other significant destinations for Chinese modules in 2M/2023, according to InfoLink.

Middle East imported 776 MW and 851 MW PV modules from China in January and February in 2023, led mainly by the UAE and Saudi Arabia, accounting for more than 200% increase YoY.

Africa, on the other hand, imported 393 MW and 544 MW in the 2 respective months as South Africa leads demand for Chinese panels.

While overall all markets show growth in terms of solar module demand, InfoLink says it is important to wait and watch the actual growth factoring in policy changes and inventory accumulation. Analysts expect only small growth compared with Q1/2023 in Q2/2023.

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