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China’s solar exports up by 64% in 2022: report

Exports amounted to US$52b, Wood Mackenzie reported. 

Solar exports in China grew by 64% to US$52b in 2022 despite global trade tensions, Wood Mackenzie reported.

Trade tensions have taken a back seat to high power prices driven by the energy crisis, and this is causing consumers and developers from around the world to buy more solar panels from China,” Alex Whitworth, research director from Wood Mackenzie, said.

Wood Mackenzie noted China’s exports consist mainly of modules with Europe as its leading solar module export market (56%). 

Exports of solar cells also increased by more than 100% as the global PV market expanded with Southeast Asia accounting for the31% of China’s solar cell exports. 

Read more: Why markets need to reshore renewable equipment supply

Wood Mackenzie noted that US tariffs on Chinese-made modules have driven module production to Southeast Asia, where many manufacturing facilities import cells from China.

Moreover, Chinese modules were also more cost-competitive as they cost up to 57% cheaper than those produced in the US and EU.

“This price gap was mainly driven by material cost, where China holds the advantage due to low energy costs, scale advantages, and government support, whereas US and EU solar module manufacturing is not competitive without subsidies,” Wood Mackenzie explained.

 

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