Comtec cancels wafer supply agreement with Mission Solar

Comtec Solar, a Chinese producer of mono wafer products for the PV industry, yesterday terminated a longstanding wafer supply agreement with U.S. solar manufacturer Mission Solar.

The termination follows Mission Solar’s failure to purchase the quantities of wafer agreed under the terms of the contract, which was signed in December 2013.

Comtec Solar stated that “given the continued unfavorable market conditions”, there was little expectation that Mission Solar would increase its wafer orders any time soon.

Conditions have been challenging in the past year for Comtec Solar’s wafer business, with the company looking to steer further capital and energy towards its downstream objectives, as confirmed in a press release published on December 4.

At the beginning of the year Comtec Solar offloaded its Malaysian mono wafer plant to Longi Silicon Materials for around $28.8 million in a deal related to its continued struggles in the upstream sector.

In October, group unit Comtec Renewable Energy announced plans to develop 50 MW of solar plants in China, while Comtec Malaysia has teamed with Sunway to develop large-scale battery systems.

The wafer market is currently dominated by the leading mono-Si suppliers, Longi and Zhonghuan, the latter having surpassed GCL towards the end of the year in terms of capacities. Having suffered from restricted supply earlier this year, the global wafer landscape could suffer from oversupply in the early stages of 2018 as the production transition from slurry to diamond wire multi-Si wafers is completed, leading to a welcome price drop to below $0.5 per piece for multi, bringing the price below mono.