China releases new provisions for PV development in 2018

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A notification released yesterday by China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) states that there will be no more plans for ground-mounted PV projects in 2018. And without further quota, any new ground-mounted PV project which requires subsidies is strictly forbidden.

For distributed PV, there will be a total quota of 10 GW for 2018. Any project finished and connected to the grid by May 31 of this year will be recognized as within this quota, and either will be supported by central or local government authorities.

The notification also said that poverty alleviation PV projects must strictly follow auditing and approval regulations. A second set of poverty alleviation project regulations is to be released soon. However, so far it is unclear whether quotas will apply to such projects.

Regarding China’s PV Top-Runner projects, the notification said the government will make a final determination later, based on PV installation volumes.

The notification encouraged local government to continue to support the PV industry which needs no subsidy. It is widely believed that residential roof-top PV is still being encouraged by the central government.

Additionally, the country’s national PV feed-in tariff (FIT) dropped by CNY 0.05 starting June 1 of this year. (But there is no change to the subsidy for county-level poverty alleviation projects.) The notification was released on May 31 and takes effect the same day. So the previous June 30 deadline has been replaced by a new one, May 31.

Author: Vincent Shaw