China WindPower to receive $942 million PV development loan

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China WindPower has announced that it will receive 5.7 billion yuan ($942 million) in loans from the China Development Bank in order to dramatically ramp up its solar PV development in the country.

As China’s largest renewable energy company, China WindPower has sought to diversify its renewable power generation offering in recent months, eyeing solar power as the most sensible and profitable means of expansion, with the company’s CEO even suggesting that solar power could become its key revenue driver in the not-too-distant future.

The monies will be loaned to the company by the China Development Bank’s Qinghai branch, and will be invested in a range of PV projects totaling a combined capacity of 800 MW, to be built at various sites across China throughout 2014 and into 2015.

Although traditionally specialists in wind farms, China WindPower currently operates 150 MW of solar power, and in December last year received an initial loan of $80.6 million — also from the China Development Bank — to develop a further 70 MW of PV capacity.

"China WindPower will gradually push forward our solar power generation business to become our core business and major profit contributor to the group," said CEO Yang Zhifeng. Earlier in 2013 the company collaborated with China National Nuclear Corp. in order to further explore its solar power potential.

In a statement published early January, China WindPower announced that it expects a "significant increase" in profit for last year following the company’s expansion into the solar market. Since November 21, China WindPower’s share values have almost doubled, rising from HK$0.355 to HK$0.69.