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PV Manufacturers Adopt a Wait-and-See Attitude towards the Market; Si-wafer Quote Becomes the Focus: Price Trend

published: 2018-04-26 18:03

This week, manufacturers from the upstream and downstream still adopted a wait-and-see attitude towards the market. Although each sector had a new quote, the actual transaction number was low. The reason for this is that there was still room to wait for the next trading opportunity. Besides, neither the buyers nor suppliers have reached an official pricing agreement. As the PV cell industry’s manufacturers are still anticipating the new monthly price quotes for si-wafers, the next wave of price growth could come from this segment.


Due to the continued shortage of mono-si material for polysilicon, the supply was unable to meet the demand, and the orders in May have occupied more than half of the production capacity. China's domestic manufacturers maintained flat prices, which were around RMB130-135/Kg. Prices of foreign manufacturers were driven by the demand on the Chinese market. The lowest price has exceeded US$14/Kg. In terms of multi-si material, because the supply was sufficient and some manufacturers increased the capacity utilization, the price was RMB 121-125/Kg. The short-term polysilicon prices are expected to rise. Owing to the change of price and supply, mono-si and multi-si materials will be different.


This week was the routine quote week on a monthly basis for major si-wafer manufacturers. In terms of mono-si wafer, because the capacity of the first-tier manufacturers was full, the uncertainty of upstream polysilicon supply became higher; the price is expected to remain or increase slightly. The rate of inventory digestion for multi-si wafer was out of expectation, as the speeds of supply and consumption couldn’t reach a balance, making the entire demand momentum become sluggish. Another reason is that the downstream PV cell manufacturers were still at the stage of inventory digestion; their urgency of purchasing material was less apparent than mono-si, so some transaction prices were lower than the market prices. It is estimated that if there is no further market demand, the multi-si wafer price trend will turn to a different situation unlike mono-si.

PV cell

Demand for mono-si PV cells was on the rise this week. In addition to the existing demand for high-performance products in overseas Europe, the local demand in China increased and focused on high-performance PERC products at the same time, causing full capacity of the first-tier companies that focused on mono-si PERC products. The overall demand was greater than the supply.

Multi-si PV cells showed another trend, limited by the unexpected stock-up activity on the Indian market and the large output of general or inefficient products, which made the sales for this type of product become sluggish. Some manufacturers tried to introduce black silicon and PERC technology to improve efficiency, hoping to gain more orders. However, owing to the limited order released by the market for such products, it is expected to be in oversupply afterward.


The module market continued the destocking situation of last week, and the originally anticipated peak season has not yet reached the peak demand. Only high-performance mono-si products stood out in the market. In addition to the price increase for some high-performance mono-si modules, the prices of other modules remained flat. The bargaining space for general conventional products was small. For individual orders, they may remain or drop slightly. The demand will need 1-2 weeks to be improved.

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