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European Solar Module Demand Rises in May as Bifacial Prices Drop Significantly

published: 2024-06-13 15:36

According to data from sun.store, the demand for solar modules in Europe increased in May, with buyer confidence rising, while the prices of bifacial modules dropped significantly.

In a report from the previous month, sun.store found that most solar module buyers plan to increase their purchases, indicating "strong confidence in the market." This conclusion is drawn from the agency's Photovoltaic Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI), which tracks the demand of over 700 photovoltaic buyers. According to the index's standards, a value above 50 indicates expected growth, 50 represents stable growth, and below 50 indicates expected decline. The rating for May 2024 was 72, up from March and April.

Among the respondents, 57% stated they intend to increase module purchases in the coming month, 30% plan to maintain stable purchase levels, and 13% intend to decrease their purchases.

Sun.store's Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) results for photovoltaics. Photo: sun.store

Sun.store's analysis indicates that the increased confidence reflects a slight recovery in industrial demand as energy prices stabilize and market competition intensifies. Lower energy costs and financial constraints due to inflation continue to impact the adoption of residential solar. The analysis also notes that this growth aligns with the typical "peak season" for solar in the summer.

The April pv.index report showed that confidence and demand had declined as energy prices and inflation stabilized. During the 2022-2023 crisis, high energy prices were a major driver of the significant increase in residential solar adoption in Europe, thereby increasing module demand.

"Overall, the Photovoltaic Purchasing Index for May is considered strong in any industry, reflecting strong buyer confidence. The index rose slightly from 68 in April to 72, indicating the market expects demand to remain stable through the summer," the report states.

Prices for bifacial modules plummeted, while prices for monofacial and all-black modules saw slight increases.

The pv.index report also tracked module prices in Europe. In May, the price of bifacial modules "dropped significantly," falling from €0.135/Wp in April to €0.128/Wp (€0.14/Wp).

In contrast to the price drop for bifacial modules, the prices for monofacial and all-black modules slightly increased.

Agata Krawiec-Rokita, CEO and co-founder of sun.store, commented: "We are currently witnessing stable module transaction prices, but listings indicate a slight downward trend. Notably, there remains a substantial inventory in Europe, and wafer prices are also decreasing, suggesting many are waiting for further price drops. This situation is sustained to some extent by high demand during the peak season. We all eagerly await the changes the coming months will bring to our market."

The report also highlights that since December 2023, JinkoSolar is no longer the top preferred module supplier for the first time. Another Chinese solar manufacturing giant, JA Solar, took the lead in May.


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