• South Korea has announced achieving solar power capacity deployment of 1.64 GW in the first 7 months of 2019
  • Of this, 1.5 GW came from small scale solar with capacity of 1 MW or less
  • South Jeolla installed maximum capacity of 0.3 GW regionally followed by 0.28 GW reported from North Jeolla province
  • Modules with an efficiency of 18% or more comprised 80% of all capacity installed during the reporting period

Originally, South Korea had plans to install 1.63 GW of total solar PV capacity in 2019, but the latest data from the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE) shows it already exceeded this target in the first 7 months of the year with 1.64 GW deployed by July 2019.

In 2018, the country achieved its annual target of 1.42 GW in October.

At least 92.1% or 1.5 GW of the 1.64 GW capacity came from small scale solar farms of 1 MW or less. This is an increase from the 83% share this solar segment claimed in 2018. The most popular capacity range was 100 kW to 1 MW that accounted for 54.8% in the first 7 months of the year, compared to 46.2% a year back.

The regions with the highest additions was South Jeolla, which installed 0.3 GW of solar farms between January 2019 to July 2019, North Jeolla added only slightly less, 0.28 GW, South Chungcheong 0.23 GW, North Gyeongsang 0.21 GW and South Gyeongsang 0.13 GW and were among the regions with larger capacity additions.

MOTIE points out that solar modules with 18% or more efficiency represented 80% of the total capacity installed during the period, which is a huge improvement over the 35% reported last year.

In 2017, solar power accounted for 1.2% of the country’s total power generation, said Yonhap News Agency. The cumulative solar PV capacity of South Korea  reached 9.5 GW by the end of July 2019.

In July 2019, MOTIE approved a 2.1 GW floating solar PV plant for Saemangeum Lake whose construction is expected to begin in H2/2020 (see South Korea Announces 2.1 GW Floating Solar Project).