Asia Pacific training program launched at PVAP

The PV Asia Pacific (PVAP) Conference in Singapore achieved a number of new milestones this year, including the launch of a new educational institute and industry awards to honor the contributions of high-profile solar sector players.

Taking place Oct. 29-30, PVAP saw the launch of the Asia Pacific Solar Institute, a collaboration between the Asian PV Industry Association (APVIA) — which organizes PVAP — the National University of Singapore, the University of New South Wales in Australia and Arizona State University in the U.S. The institute will offer interdisciplinary training programs in solar energy at the three universities to professionals looking to pursue or advance careers in solar energy.

In addition, APVIA honored a slew of industry players and leading international companies with its inaugural APVIA Awards.

On Tuesday the event presented awards in five categories, Industry, Technology, Application, Education and Finance. APVIA said the five categories provide "opportunities to honor established and emerging companies, research institutes, professionals, entrepreneurs and individuals across the entire photovoltaic industry."

Winners included Peng Fang, former CEO of JA Solar, who received the Industrial Contribution Award for an individual, and GCL-Poly Energy Holdings, which took the prize in the same category as an enterprise. Phoenix Solar won the Technological Achievement Award, while First Solar Australia nabbed the Photovoltaic Application Award. APVIA honored Martin Green from University of New South Wales in Australia with the Academic Contribution Award for an individual and Trina Solar in the same category as a company. Standard Chartered Bank was honoured with the Banking and Financing Initiative Award.

Now in its third year, PVAP also includes such industry panel discussions and conferences as the Solar Leaders Dialogue, Global PV Financial Summit and the PV Technology Conference.

The events bring together CEOs from leading PV companies, industry experts, academic scholars, representatives from industry associations, financial institutions and media companies to discuss the core issues facing the solar sector in Asia-Pacific, including market opportunities, bankability, financing and quality.

International panelists at the event included Zhengrong Shi, founder and executive director of Suntech Power; Hua Shu, executive president of GCL-Poly, Alexander Lenz, president Asia & Middle East at Conergy; First Solar Malaysia managing director Soo Hong Png; Alakesh Chetia, managing director of rural electrification at Sunedison; Qiang Huang, vice president Technology & Operations at Trina Solar; Amiram Roth-Deblon, regional director Asia Pacific at juwi Renewable Energies; Sandra Retzer, managing director Asia Pacific at Younicos; and Geoff Stapleton, managing director at Global Sustainable Energy Solutions.