Ecosolifer chooses Santa Catarina for its Brazilian PV module factory

Switzerland’s Ecosolifer announced plans this week for a PV module factory in the Brazilian state of Santa Catarina. In its first phase, the factory will have the capacity to produce 100 MW of solar PV modules annually, with an investment estimated at around US$10 million.

Modules produced in the factory would utilize multi-junction cells, which incorporate an amorphous silicon layer deposited on monocrystalline silicon wafers. These will imported from a plant in Hungary which Ecosolifer plans to inaugurate in January 2016.

When built, the Brazilian factory will employ 90 workers. The company is currently seeking a location within the state of Santa Catarina and local partners.

In the middle of 2015, Santa Catarina launched a program to support the development of renewable energies, the SC+Energia initiative – The Catarina Program for Clean Energy. Santa Catarina is already one to one of Brazil’s largest solar plants, a 3 MW project en Tubarao built by Tractabel Energía.

Brazil has mandated local content requirements for companies which wish to access financing for PV projects through development bank BNDES. After imposing this requirement, the capacity of module production in the nation is set to increase significantly in the coming years, and already various companies are planning to open PV factories.

In early October JinkoSolar announced that it was postponing construction of a PV module factory, after the a collapse in the value of the Real from mid-July through the end of September. And while economists are still saying that the nation is in recession, in the last two months the value of the nation’s currency has stabilized.

Translation and additional reporting by Christian Roselund. The original article in Spanish can be found on the pv magazine Latinoamérica website.