After the year-end holiday period and the conclusions of multi-stage tenders, the supply-demand relationship of the whole PV market has been reset and now enters a new adjustment period. Prices in China’s polysilicon market have been corrected downward slightly in response to the price decline in foreign markets. Prices of wafers, cells, and modules have been holding steady, and their courses are expected to remain relatively stable through January and up to the arrival of the Chinese New Year in the beginning of February. If no favorable policies are announced during January, then the optimistic anticipation in the market for policy-driven demand growth might be dampened or extinguished in the near future.
Trading in the polysilicon market has been muted this week. The price decline in markets outside China in the previous week, together with efforts by domestic suppliers in reducing excess inventory, have pushed down spot prices slightly in China. However, the overall price trend in China has been stable even as buyers are now negotiating orders for the end of the month. Regarding changes in China’s production capacity, the number of domestic suppliers that still operating has gone down from 24 to 18 this month. However, the country’s total production volume has risen substantially 294,000t a year ago to the current level of 359,000t. Also, more than 90% of China’s domestic demand for mono-Si feedstock can be met by the newly added production capacity. This implies that China’s domestic polysilicon production will gradually substitute foreign imports. For this week, prices of multi-Si feedstock in China have stayed in the range of RMB 72-76/kg, with the average dropping to RMB 74/kg. Price of the mono-Si feedstock in China have stayed in the range of RMB 79-83/kg, with the average falling to RMB 80/kg. Outside China, polysilicon prices (including multi-Si and mono-Si) have not fluctuated noticeably and are now in the range of USD 8.20-9.50/kg.
The price trend in the wafer market is stable this week. Also, wafer suppliers are expected to maintain their production as usual during the Chinese New Year period. Since most negotiations in the wafer market for shipment orders in January have already finished, the room for more flexible quotation is limited for additional separate orders. In China, prices of mono-Si wafers are holding in the range of RMB 3.05-3.10/pc, and prices of multi-Si wafers are maintained in the range of RMB 2.05-2.20/pc. The average price of black silicon wafers (which also represents the highest price of multi-Si wafers) have stayed at RMB 2.25/pc in China. Wafer prices have been stable outside China as well, with mono-Si settling in the range of USD 0.380-0.390/pc and multi-Si residing in the range of USD 0.255-0.280/pc. Likewise, the average price of black silicon wafers has been kept at USD 0.305/pc outside China.
The cell market still enjoys robust demand this week. Regarding high-efficiency mono-Si cells, its market availability is increasingly limited because much of its production is to meet the demand from orders that have been placed in advance. Conversely, the supply-demand relationship in the market for multi-Si cells is stable. Cell prices in China have been constant this week, with conventional multi-Si, conventional mono-Si, high-efficiency mono-Si and superior high-efficiency mono-Si (>21.5%) keeping within the respective ranges of RMB 0.81-0.88/W, RMB 1.00-1.08/W, RMB 1.20-1.25/W, and RMB 1.23-1.30/W. Prices outside China are also holding steady, with conventional multi-Si, conventional mono-Si, high-efficiency mono-Si, and superior high-efficiency mono-Si maintaining in the respective ranges of USD 0.105-0.130/W, USD 0.135-0.158/W, USD 0.160-0.173/W, and USD 0.170-0.178/W. As for bifacial cells, their average price has risen to RMB 1.35/W.
The module market has slowed down noticeably this week due to the effect of the year-end holiday season in North America and Europe and the conclusions of multi-stage tenders in China. Currently in China, prices of conventional (270-275W) and high-efficiency (280-285W) multi-Si modules are respectively within RMB 1.80-1.85/W and RMB 1.83-1.93/W, while prices of conventional (290-295W) and high-efficiency (300-305W) mono-Si modules are respectively within RMB 1.83-1.96/W and RMB 2.10-2.20/W. The average price of superior high-efficiency modules is also kept at RMB 2.23/W in China. There have been no significant price fluctuations in module markets outside China this week. Thus, prices of conventional and high-efficiency multi-Si modules have been hanging around USD 0.207-0.265/W and USD 0.212-0.275/W, respectively. Meanwhile, prices of conventional and high-efficiency mono-Si modules have been residing within USD 0.242-0.360/W and USD 0.265-0.380/W, respectively.