Overall, the Japanese electronics company will add an extra 150 MW of PV module capacity to its Shimane and Shiga production lines, annually. Production of the extra capacity is expected to start next March.
A capital investment of 9.5 billion yen ($79.3 million) has been calculated for the expansion. Upon completion, it will take Panasonics total global PV module production to over 1GW, across its three manufacturing facilities in Japan, and one in Malaysia. The aim is to expand the penetration of Panasonics Smart Home Energy Management Systems.
In a statement released, the company said it expects to see continued "strong demand" in Japans residential and non-residential solar rooftop markets, supported by the government. "In other Asian countries, as well as Europe and the United States, the residential rooftop markets are also expected to remain solid," it added.
Q1 records strong PV sales
While the Panasonic Corporation recorded a slight Y/Y consolidated group sales loss in Q1 2015 around $64.5 billion, down from around $64.7 billion in Q1 2014, it noted that sales of its residential PV systems were "strong". It attributed its 3% eco solutions segment profit increase, from around $769.6 million to $796.3 million, to a rise in sales of the systems.