Last week, there were two headlines for solar industry on both positive and negative sides – the positive one was that China officially announced its new PV system installation target of 14GW in 2014, which represented a strong market demand; the negative one was that the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) had filed SolarWorld’s petition against dumping and subsidies. EnergyTrend, a research division of TrendForce, indicates that spot prices of upstream PV products will continue to rise in spite of the complicated market conditions and disadvantageous factors in the U.S. market.
According to EnergyTrend, Taiwanese wafer price will increase by around 5% to US $1.1/piece in March. Regarding polycrystalline silicon, the quotation may increase by 6% ~ 8% from February to RMB 170/kg in March because the price in the Chinese market remains high, and it hence leads to the increased global price. “Although there seems to be an uncertain factor in the U.S. market, the global supply-demand situation is still intense. The outlook toward China, Europe, Japan and emerging markets is positive as well,” said Arthur Hsu, research manager of EnergyTrend. “Additionally, as raw material price is expected to become higher, several markets offer manufacturers advantageous conditions to raise the price in March.”
Recently, Taiwanese PV cell makers have been striving to come up with the best strategy for dumping lawsuit and to minimize the possible loss. Despite the fact that the spot price may increase in March, buyers are likely to act in a more conservative way during this period. It takes time for China’s advantageous policies to carry on and bring actual results, adding the fact that situations in the U.S. and Japanese markets won’t be clear until mid- to late-March. EnergyTrend therefore predicts that the prices of Taiwanese PV products may slightly increase while the shipment may slightly drop in March.
Last week, March’s quotation of polycrystalline silicon increased but trading price remained as usual. The average price in the Chinese market was around RMB 155/kg and the price in the Taiwanese market slightly rose by 0.56% to US $19.856/kg during the same period.
Regarding prices of polycrystalline silicon wafers, the trading prices in the Chinese market kept rising because of strong domestic demand and high capacity utilization in February. Trading prices in Taiwan increased by 2.96% to US $1.044/piece last week as Taiwanese manufacturers had already started negotiating orders for March and some orders have been bargained by higher prices. Monocrystalline wafer price also increased by 2.05% to US $1.195/piece, which was triggered by stronger demand from the Chinese market.
Rising quotation of mono-Si cells caused the average price to rise slightly to US $0.397/Watt, a 0.25% rise. Price of mono-si modules also rose a bit while price of poly-si modules remained the same last week.