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Magazine Archive 2018

Solar’s new fertile crescent

Middle Eastern PV: The Jordanian solar sector has enjoyed near-constant growth in recent years, proving that it is a market founded on a sustainable and reliable base. Investors have been wondering for a few years whether Egypt can follow Jordan’s example successfully, and the signs are good that 2018 will prove to be a strong year for Egypt’s solar development. pv magazine explains the forces driving this optimism.

Vulnerable solar markets, and what makes them tick

Part II*: India is a risky country to do business in, because low bidding has led to margins so tight that any disruption could lead to market collapse, because low margins have led to shortcuts during installation of multi-megawatt projects, and because the business atmosphere can kindly be termed a labyrinth.

USA: Shaken but stirred

IHS Markit analysis: Despite uncertainty generated by domestic policy reform, the U.S. will remain a top three global market for PV in 2018, which will see another year of decline before resuming growth in 2019, writes Camron Barati.

N-type capacity expansion in 2018

Manufacturing trends: Global PV demand reached 102 GW in 2017 thanks to the significant increase of Chinese demand. Demand will slightly drop in China, the U.S., and Japan this year, while India and the emerging markets should witness higher demand. Therefore, total demand in 2018 will just be slightly lower than last year, reaching 95 GW.

Distributing MENA’s solar riches

Interview: Solar PV development in the Middle East and North Africa region has been indicating a move to the fast lane for some time. Could 2018 be the year in which the region, as a whole, begins to distribute its abundant PV potential in a manner that benefits all? pv magazine chats with APVIA’s COO Murray Cameron for the lowdown on what drives MENA’s policy decisions.

Power, to the people

Puerto Rico: The devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria on the island of Puerto Rico was vast and indiscriminate. Reporter Daniella Cheslow visited some of the areas most badly affected and found a shredded grid, a rising demand for energy independence, solar and storage, and a heartening reminder of humankind’s capacity for kindness, endurance and determination.

Taxing times

Solar and U.S. tax reform: The solar and wind industries largely dodged the bullet in the process of U.S. tax reform. But there will still be impacts on renewable energy project finance, which are many and complex, and it is hard to say what the final end-market impact will be.

€3/MWh is a crowd

French tender model: Crowdfunding is raising unexpected interest in France’s solar energy sector, as the local government last year introduced an additional incentive for tendered projects partly financed through crowdfunding. Although €3/MWh may seem a negligible sum, the bonus is attracting several developers and investors, as also in the booming French market price pressure is becoming stronger.

Myanmar’s solar lifeline

Myanmar market overview: There is vast solar potential in the country, primarily in off-grid, which is the number one driver of electrification, and proving a lifeline for many. C&I presents an interesting business case, but as with utility-scale projects there is still a lot to be done.

IEA sells solar short

Global markets: In its annual World Energy Outlook the International Energy Agency frequently speaks in glowing terms about solar’s impressive importance in reducing costs. However, when it comes to the scenarios for deployment it remains very conservative – suggesting PV’s growth will flatten out and remain a bit player in the global energy mix. Auke Hoekstra, Senior Advisor in Electric Mobility at the Eindhoven University of Technology, is the latest in a growing number of people taking the IEA to task for getting solar wrong year after year.

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