Market Analysis

Our Managing Director Martin Schachinger writes a personal market comment every month, which is published in trade journals like pv magazine in market reports from analysts like Mercom Capital, as well as in online platforms such as RECHARGE or the Solarserver. Here you can find the complete collection of all articles.
The speed at which manufacturers are introducing changes from one product generation to the next is accelerating – currently, formats are scarcely available for more than a few months before another revised product is launched. But occasionally new module dimensions also bring new problems, be it in handling, plant design or logistics. more ...
The solar industry, as well as actors connected to this industry, see themselves predominantly as supporters of the environment and humanity and as such also advocates of human rights. Even large Chinese PV manufacturers publish statements to this effect, at least to the extent they are listed on Western stock exchanges. I do not want to speculate on whether these statements reflect the truth. But what does the topic of human rights have to do with the solar industry? more ...
Looking back at the past year, the renewables sector has seen two extremes. In Germany, disparity was triggered in part by the recently passed amendment to the Renewable Energy Act (EEG). For PV in particular, the pendulum will swing in favor of installers of small systems in the near term. For installations up to 30 kWp, the new law has cleared market barriers. more ...
Thanks for what - thanks for nothing? No, I don't want to express it that drastically. Alongside all of the crises, 2020 has brought us a few good initiatives and developments. In the folowing I want to look back over the second half year, and offer a quick look at what could be in store for 2021. more ...
I’ll kick off this year’s retrospective with a line that sounds like it’s right out of a German pop song: last spring, it all felt so right... And yet, what followed was not only one of the hottest years since global temperatures were recorded but also one of the craziest years we’ve seen in recent decades. This month and next, I’ll look back at how the German and European PV markets developed under the pall of the pandemic and the climate crisis with a special focus on the antics that have kept us on the edge of our seats in this country thanks to the latest iteration of our Renewable Energy Act (EEG). more ...
As much as 15% of all renewable energy projects in Europe could be delayed or cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis, according to a recent warning issued by McKinsey. Financial difficulties and reduced working hours had held many back from investing, despite a raft of economic stimulus programs. The pandemic also had a negative impact on the energy markets themselves, says the consultancy. Persistently lower commodity prices made conventional energy sources more attractive, and the expansion of renewables less popular. more ...
Just how dire the consequences are of the unambitious draft bill of the Renewable Energies Act (EEG) recently proposed by the German federal government cannot be overstated - both for the future of the solar industry in Germany and for our civilization as a whole. more ...
From mid-July to early August, prices fell across the board – perhaps for the last time this year amid indications that the slide in prices over recent months will soon come to an end. Most manufacturers have either announced price increases in the range of a few cents per watt for the fourth quarter, or have already released adjusted price lists. But anybody who thinks that they can still buy cheap modules in unlimited quantities for short-term delivery is in for a disappointment. more ...
As early as March 2019, information began to emerge on the patent lawsuit being filed on three continents by module manufacturer Hanwha Q-Cells against its competitors Longi Solar, JinkoSolar and REC. At that time, it was still unclear whether the lawsuit would even be admitted and what exactly its purpose was. Just over a year later, the first verdicts have now been handed down. In the USA the rulings were against the plaintiff, but in Germany they came down in its favor. more ...
With the Covid-19 crisis having left the solar market relatively unscathed, in Germany at least, it looks as if the final hurdles in the way of an urgently needed photovoltaic boom have been cleared. In the evening hours of 18 June, the time had finally come: the German Bundestag resolved to eliminate the EEG's 52 GW cap on PV. Although the corresponding decision in the lower house of the German parliament - the Bundesrat - was still pending, this is usually a formality. more ...
A few months back, I asked the question: are bifacial modules taking over the market? Another time I pointed out a shift from full cell to half-cut cell modules, notes Martin Schachinger of pvXchange. Now, both trends seem to have been a harbinger of the developments currently unfolding. I cannot exactly call this progress, as current developments driven by the big Asian manufacturers certainly involve points that warrant a critical eye, but more on that later. more ...
For years, many players within the renewable energy sector have been thinking about what to do with installations in Germany once they drop out of the government feed-in-tariff scheme after the 20-year operating period has expired. Of course, the aim is to avoid a situation in which many plants that are well maintained and still in good working order are gradually disconnected from the grid. more ...