PV module shipments to grow 30% in 2014

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The module supply will support the PV industry to reaching 50 GW this year, according to NPD Solarbuzz.

The top 20 module suppliers to the photovoltaic industry are guiding an increase in annual shipments of more than 30% this year, according to market research firm NPD Solarbuzz.

Leading Chinese module suppliers Trina Solar, Canadian Solar, ReneSola and Jinko Solar are forecasting the most aggressive growth in shipments during 2014, with the upper-end of guidance exceeding 40%, the company writes in its latest Module Tracker Quarterly report.

"The top-20 module suppliers to the PV industry account for two-thirds of global shipments, and they provide the leading indicators of industry growth and pricing trends," says Ray Lian, senior analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. "Assuming the leading suppliers achieve the forecasted growth rates, end-market demand in 2014 will approach 50 GW."

Yingli Green Energy is expecting the highest shipment volume this year, with the upper end of shipments at 4.2 GW – a level that would result in Yingli topping the annual PV supplier shipment rankings for the third year in a row.

Leading Japanese silicon-based PV module suppliers Sharp Solar and Kyocera are forecasting a 15% increase in shipments in 2014, reflecting continued strength in the Japanese solar market. Sharp Solar and Kyocera command strong shares in their domestic markets, NPD Solarbuzz notes.

"In addition to benefiting from strong shipment growth in 2014, the top 20 module suppliers are also forecast to increase profit margins," Lian adds. "Growth is driven mainly by cost reductions in manufacturing, and lower capital expenditure on new manufacturing plants."