L R AS Published on Monday 7 September 2020 - n° 330 - Categories:the prices, panels

Rising panel prices dampen demand

Rising prices throughout the supply chain are driving down demand for photovoltaic panels.

The global photovoltaic market has been recovering since the end of the second quarter. The mitigation of the pandemic has allowed demand to exceed forecasts.

Two incidents (explosion, flooding) at two silicon manufacturers

in July and August suddenly created a shortage and pushed up prices throughout the sector.

However, new cell production units were put into service in the 3rd quarter. Already, we can see that the price of G1 cells has been falling since the end of August, due to the presence of an important production capacity and a change in the standard format. Cell prices in non-Chinese markets have fallen slightly to an average of $0.121 - $0.122 / W. Wafer prices are expected to remain stable for some time as wafer producers have greater bargaining power.

In response to their rising costs, Chinese panel manufacturers increased their prices by 0.1 - 0.2 RMB/W to reach 1.6 - 1.7 RMB/W. Prices for M6 (166 mm) based single-PEK panels have recently risen to 1.55 - 1.65 RMB/W, but only a few contracts have been concluded with price increases. If the price of panels exceeds 1.6 RMB/W, this level will be a huge obstacle for non-subsidised projects. Their developers will then choose to postpone installation until next year, and delay their non-essential supply. It should even reduce demand in the second half of the year. Demand for panels should therefore stabilise at best. In addition to this factor, the resurgence of the pandemic will also curb demand.

PV InfoLink is revising its forecasts for demand for panels downwards. They are reduced from 121 GW to 117 GW, i.e. a little less than the realisations of 2019.


PV InfoLink of 3 September

Editor's note The pandemic has forced governments to give completion deadlines to contracts that previously had a deadline for completion. This latitude, which was required in May or June, has had a significant effect on manufacturers in the second half of the year.

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