While it has seen little fallout for its operating PV assets, the Norwegian solar developer says the coronavirus pandemic has started to affect construction, commissioning and testing of some of its new solar plants.
Xinyi Solar reported record profits earlier this month, not surprisingly prompting bullish talk of extending its plans to expand production capacity this year and next. However, with PV demand in Europe key to its returns, the company has accepted the coronavirus epidemic may have an impact this year.
The governments of both countries are answering solar industry requests by adjusting tender schemes and considering measures to avoid financial penalties and the loss of incentives due to missed deadlines.
A slump in demand would weigh more heavily on the storage industry than a temporary production shutdown and IHS Markit analysts say that is where the risk lies, rather than with a temporary shortage of battery cells. A similar prediction has been made for the PV market.
Saudi energy company Acwa Power announces $275 million has been borrowed for a project which is due to start supplying electricity to the national utility this year under a 15-year power supply deal.
The airline industry has been among the hardest hit by the Covid-19 pandemic; carriers are in ‘freefall’ as Glen Peters, research director at the Center for International Climate and Environment Research in Oslo recently wrote, with governments mulling stimulus packages for airline bailouts. How we react to the coronavirus outbreak is crucial for society as a whole and the solar and energy storage industries can lead the charge in rewriting the status quo.
The federal government’s ‘economic response to the coronavirus’ legislation encompasses the installation of commercial and industrial solar.
Tesla’s Nevada operation is still open for business, though. The EV and battery maker has assured the market its cash position is strong enough to weather an “extended period of uncertainty”.
Manufacturing operations in China are beginning to return to normal, with Taiwan-based research firm PV InfoLink reporting 80% capacity utilization across the supply chain in March. But the broader impact that Covid-19 will have on global demand for PV remains to be seen, and will depend on the extent to which the outbreak can be contained, says PV InfoLink chief analyst Corrine Lin.
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