- Solar import activity in India during calendar year Q2/2018 went down by 60% to $436.6 million compared to Q1/2018, according to Mercom
- Market share of Chinese companies in imports also dropped to 75.9%, as against more than 90% a quarter back
- Chinese imports into India fell close to 200%, while those from Taiwan region reduced by 31%
- Indian exports declined 9% to $17.4 million, while US accounted for 63% of business for Indian manufacturers, an increase of 14% MoM
- Mercom believes slowdown in solar installations and uncertainty around the safeguard duty case added to the lower procurement of cells and modules that led to the decline in import activity; the trend is expected to continue for the next few quarters
The continued uncertainty around safeguard duty in India, coupled with a drop in demand for solar installations and Dweak auction activity has started to impact the country’s solar business activities. During Q2/2018 calendar year (CY) Indian solar imports went down by a whopping 60%, according to Mercom India Research.
In its yet to be released Mercom India Q2 Quarterly Market Report, the Indian clean energy consultancy says, that during Q2/2018, solar modules and cells worth $436.6 million were imported in the country, as against $1 billion imported in the previous quarter. China that has a stronghold in the Indian solar market with its deluge of imports bore the brunt of the slowdown. Mercom’s records show Chinese companies accounted for nearly 75.9% of the country’s imports in Q2/2018 (CY), down from more than 90% sequentially.
Solar imports from China alone fell almost 200% from $991 million in first quarter of the year, to $331 million in the reporting period.
While the import from Taiwan region doubled its market share to 8.3% of total imports worth $36 million, its solar imports during the quarter from Taiwan region declined by 31%. Vietnam was ranked third with a 3.8% market share, succeeded by Canada with 3.6%, Singapore with 2.6%, Hong Kong with 1.8%, and Thailand with 1.7% market share.
Exports drop too
Along with imports, there was a decline of 9% reported in Indian exports of solar cells and modules, which dropped to $17.4 million, compared to $19.15 million in Q1/2018. The US accounted for a 63% share of solar cells and modules exported from India in the period, a sequential jump of 14%. Mercom says Belgium, UAE, South Africa, Japan and Canada were the other major export destinations for Indian PV manufacturers.
“A slowdown in solar installations and the uncertainty around the safeguard duty case correlate with the lower procurement of cells and modules, thus negatively affecting import activity. This downward trend is likely to continue for a few quarters,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group.
Correction: The subhead in the original story said that Chinese solar and module imports to India in Q2/2018 dropped 200%. In fact, it should say 67%.