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Chinese leave USA far behind in all solar segments as domestic market dominates world

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Chinese Solar Market dominates globally

The Chinese solar industry has been growing at a tremendous pace in the last 5-6 years and has now come to dominate the world in almost all Solar Panelsparts of the supply chain. The western countries have been decimated and most of them have become marginal players. The European companies which used to dominate the world in the past based on the domestic market demand, have most went bankrupt. Q-Cells which used to be the worlds’ biggest solar cell supplier in 2008 with a market capitalization in excess of 10 billion euros, went bankrupt and was bought for a pitiful amount by a South Korean group Hanwha. Most of the German industrial giants such as Siemens and Bosch have exited the business after taking write-downs in hundreds of millions of Euros.

A few USA solar companies have been left standing, but now even they too are becoming smaller than the Chinese. The Chinese market which used to be less than 1 GW in 2010, is now going to become 14 GW in 2014 which is an astounding 1300% growth. The Chinese market now accounts for more than 30% of the global demand and is now twice as large as the second biggest market in Japan. USA is losing rankings in all spheres. First Solar (FSLR) which used to be the world’s largest EPC developer of solar projects has lost its No.1 position to the Chinese company TBEA SunOasis. First Solar had already lost its No.1 position as solar panel producer and supplier to Suntech (STP) and then Yingli Green Energy (YGE).

USA continues to be the major center for solar innovation but the locus has shifted to China, as the market becomes a giant multi-billion dollar one. The Chinese companies which have survived the vicious downturn are now major players in other emerging markets in Africa, Middle East and Latin America. They are also entering other parts of the supply chain where they were weak earlier, such as solar installations and solar inverter production. It is only a matter of time before they become major leaders in research and innovation as well, given the massive amounts of money that is being generated each year.

TBEA SunOasis (Urumqi, China) is likely to replace First Solar Inc. (Tempe, Arizona, U.S.) as the world’s largest solar photovoltaic (PV) engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contractor in 2014, according to an analysis by IHS Technology (London).

“IHS PV EPC and Project Market Tracker” notes that while First Solar installed 1.1 GW of PV in 2013 against TBEA’s 1.0 GW, that First Solar is expected to install only 1.3 GW in 2014. Meanwhile, TBEA is expected to install 1.5 GW of PV during the year.

Source – IHS


Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to

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