Asia to beat Europe in solar installations in 2013

Europe’s dominance in the global solar market is “set to end” as PV installations are expected to “dramatically decline” in 2013. That’s according to analysts at IHS, who have predicted […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

Europe’s dominance in the global solar market is “set to end” as PV installations are expected to “dramatically decline” in 2013.

That’s according to analysts at IHS, who have predicted Asia to become the largest region for PV installations “for the first time in 10 years”.

They claim that despite the growth in countries such as the UK, Turkey and Netherlands, installations in Europe are forecast to fall from 18GW to 13GW in 2013 to as low as 37%, which is suggested could be linked to action taking against allegations that Chinese firms were “dumping” solar panels into the EU market last year.

According to the analysts, Asia installed more than 4GW of solar power in the fourth quarter of 2012 – an amount close to half the global total – which is predicted to grow to 15GW this year.

Ash Sharma, Senior Director of solar research at IHS said: “While hopes in the past could have been pinned on Germany or Italy – which accounted for nearly two-thirds of European installations in 2012 – growth here looks impossible… Looming anti-dumping measures against Chinese manufacturers are taking their toll on Europe, resulting in price increases and additional registration paperwork that will further temper solar demand this year.”

However, global PV installations are forecast to exceed 35GW this year, equivalent to a 12% growth.

Mr Sharma added: “We often see quite pessimistic forecasts at the start of each year for PV installations due to a seasonal slowdown and talks of major incentive cuts as Europe reassesses its PV policy typically after yet another year of record growth. However, our analysis of more than 60 countries around the world shows that demand outside of Europe will more than compensate for the fall in the Continent.”

Growth rates of 250%, 50% and 65% are forecast for the Middle-East and Africa, America and Asia.