Sweden allocates $60 million in solar rebates for 2018

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The Swedish Energy Agency (Energimyndigheten) has announced it will provide 500 million SEK ($60.7 million) in rebates for the support of small-sized solar PV projects in 2018.

The agency said in its statement that it will initially allocate 200 million SEK, while two more tranches of 200 million SEK and 100 million SEK, respectively, will be assigned starting from April, and in the fall.

The structuring of the allocation process across three tranches, the agency’s managing director, Andreas Gustafsson said, was conceived to help local authorities improve application procedures, and to reduce the time applicants must wait to secure funds.

Overall, the agency has allocated 1.4 billion SEK ($170 million) in the period between 2009 and 2017 through the program. Last year, funds were increased from an initial budget of 200 million SEK to 400 million SEK.

When the announcement was made, Isabella Lövin, Sweden’s Deputy Prime Minister said the additional funds were aimed at lowering the growing bottleneck of potential PV system owners waiting to gain access to the rebate program.

In comparison, the government allocated 225 million SEK in 2016, and just 150 million SEK in 2015.

Under the scheme, homeowners and private or public companies are entitled to receive a rebate, which covers 30% of the costs of buying and installing a PV system. The maximum available amount for a single project is 1.2 million SEK.

In order to enable more growth in the residential and commercial segments, the government recently unveiled a proposal to eliminate the obligation to require a building permit for the installation of rooftop PV systems.

Last year, it also introduced a 98% reduction on the tax for electricity generated by renewable energy power generators over 255 kW.

Sweden reached an installed PV capacity of around 140 MW at the end of 2016.