PV system prices
November 2013: German and Chinese system prices begin to converge
In October the downward trend continued for system prices of all offers as well as for German tier-1 manufacturers. On the other hand, Chinese tier-1 manufacturers' prices were significantly higher than at the end of September, climbing to €1,479/kWp. After German tier-1 system prices actually fell below the global average for the first time in September, they are now both hovering at about €1,522/kWp. Thus, Chinese and German system prices began converging in October. This shows that German manufacturers are getting more and more competitive in terms of price and even in the German market, the "Made in Germany" badge commands less of a premium than it once did.
October 2013: German tier-1 prices dip below global average
In September, system prices of German tier-1 manufacturers decreased on average and for the first time actually fell below the average of all manufacturers, with its lowest value ever of €1,533/kWp. This is a sure indicator that competition is really tightening in the German PV market. The prices of Chinese tier-1 module manufacturers also decreased to €1,419/kWp, also the lowest ever recorded. The average price of systems with modules from German market leader Yingli cost on average €1,438/kWp. Systems with modules from Solarworld cost considerably more at €1,590/kWp.
September 2013: Market holds steady once again
After the upswing in the past months, German PV system prices remained constant in August. Both prices for systems with German tier-1 modules and prices for systems with Chinese tier-1 modules were stable in comparison to the last month. This also applied to the average system price of all systems, which was still €1,588. System prices have seemed to plateau at this level. Thus in August the manufacturers also kept their prices constant. This sideways movement represents the uncertainty of the solar industry regarding a possible revision of the legal framework for renewable energy in Germany. It is also notable, that the difference between Chinese and German tier-1 systems is gradually increasing.
August 2013: The market calms itself after the antidumping storm
Average system prices in the German residential and small commercial segment dropped in July after slight increases in the previous two months. Against this trend, German tier-1 products were again showing an upward movement to €1,682/kWp, the highest value since January 2013. In contrast, system prices for Chinese tier-1 products continued to decrease, with the average system price at €1,449/kWp, which constitutes the lowest average price level ever achieved. The overall decrease of the average system price is due to the heavy reductions of Chinese tier-1 products. In light of the minimum import prices imposed by the European Union, German manufacturers and their partners seem to have taken the opportunity to freeze their prices. System quotes for Chinese competitors, on the other hand, need to compensate for possible price differences in an attempt to reestablish their competitive advantage.
July 2013: Average prices reach an all-time high for the year
The increase in the average system price for German tier-1 products in May continued in June. Even the Chinese tier-1 system price climbed to almost €1,500/kWp while the average system price increased to €1,619/kWp and reached its all-time high for 2013. Still the policy framework of the European solar market is associated with uncertainty and import duties on Chinese PV products are inhibiting current price reductions. Nevertheless, the recent development in the EU-China trade war points at a political resolution soon. After all, prices are likely to continue their downward trend from mid-year onward.
June 2013: German prices rebound on the back of EU tariffs
In May 2013 the average system price increased after a long decline. While Chinese Tier 1 system prices continued to fall, German Tier 1 products rebounded. The average price for Chinese Tier 1 products was €1,464/kWp. At €1,667/kWp the German system price average almost bounced back to the price it was in January 2013. This increase is obviously related to the European Union's introduction of 11.8% import duties on PV products manufactured in China. Future price developments will therefore explicitly depend on the future of international solar trade relationships.