Turkey added 1.17 GW of solar in December alone

The Turkish solar market has grown much stronger than expected last year, thanks to an end-of-year rush in the installation of unlicensed PV solar plants.

According to new statistics published by the Turkish Electricity Transmission Company, TEİAŞ, around 1,175 MW of new PV installations 1 MW and under in size were connected to the grid in the country in December.

Through these new additions, last year’s newly installed PV capacity has reached 2,588 MW, while the country’s cumulative installed capacity, which at the end of 2016 stood at only 832.5 MW, has topped 3,420 MW.

Of the total installed power, around 3,402 MW comes in the form of unlicensed PV installations, while the remaining capacity, 17.9 MW, is represented by licensed PV capacity. All of the plants included in the first category are below 1 MW, or are segmented into 1 MW sub-units.

At the end of the first half of last year, new additions for 2017 totaled around 553.2 MW. This means that around 2 GW of new installations were connected to the Turkish grid in the second half of last year.

These figures parachute Turkey into a leading PV market in 2017, particularly in Europe as Germany is probably set to register around 1.8 GW of new PV systems, and the U.K. will see growth of not more than 1 GW for last year.

The end-of the year rush was due to the fact the regulated tariff being granted to unlicensed PV projects was lowered by 25% at the beginning of 2018.

Under the regulation for unlicensed PV projects, investors have the option to sell all of the power generated to the spot market at a 10-year tariff of $0.13 per kWh via the power providers; to sell only excess power through net metering; or to not connect their facilities to the grid at all, and instead self-consume the generated energy.

In 2018, the regulated tariff for these kinds of projects will be $0.10 per kWh.