Low worldwide bookings for PV equipment in the first quarter

The worldwide PV manufacturing equipment billings and bookings for the first quarter of 2013 remained below expectations for the eighth consecutive quarter. The book-to-bill ratio in 1Q2013 was 0.60, staying well below parity. The 0.60 figure shows the ratio of orders received to units shipped and billed for a specified period, in this case the first quarter of this year.

Global billings fell to US$291 million, 41% lower than the previous quarter and 58% below the same quarter in 2012.The demand for PV equipment remained strong in Asia. For the full year 2012, Asia made up 80% of total billings.

Total billings and bookings for 2012 were revised with the 1Q2013 data collection. For the full year 2012 billings were $2.45 billion. This was a 60% decline from 2011 billings of $6.18 billion. Annual bookings in 2012 were $1.21 billion, 76% below 2011 bookings of $4.97 billion.

Bettina Weiss executive vice president of business development at SEMI explained to pv magazine in April this year that analysts are divided over when exactly the upturn will happen, but consensus appears to be forming that the upstream market will improve in the first half of 2014.