Photovoltaic Industry Price Trend: Apparent Increasing Module Prices in Q4 with Temporarily Stabilized Supply Chain Prices

published: 2020-11-04 17:14 | editor: | category: Price Trend

Polysilicon

The polysilion orders for this week have been successively concluded, and the overall market prices have been stabilized. According to the currently concluded polysilicon orders, there have been fewer orders closed on high price levels, and the mainstream quotation for mono polysilicon is at RMB 88-92/kg, with an average price of RMB 89/kg. The downstream market remains inferior in the purchase volume of multi polysilicon under the impact from stagnant end demand for the particular product, which resulted in the mainstream quotation of multi polysilicon to arrive at RMB 57-63/kg, and a stabilized average price of RMB 60/kg. The overall closing price of polysilicon has slightly depleted due to bargaining, and the global polysilicon price has been adjusted to US$11.096/W.

The top 4 suppliers in production volume amongst 11 domestic polysilicon businesses had produced a combined total of 25.8K tons polysilicon in October that occupy approximately 75% of the total production volume, which is expected to continue to experience a slight MoM increase in November as Xinjiang and Sichuan further release production capacity after operation resumption from overhaul. In addition, the pandemic status of the Kashgar Prefecture makes it necessary for a continuous observation on the prospect of provision from Xinjiang’s polysilicon market. In general, as the downstream sector constantly releases new production capacity of mono-Si wafers and continues to elevate the demand for polysilicon, and that the market supply of polysilicon is also further increasing at the same time, the supply and demand will enter a relatively balanced state alongside the escalated ascension in polysilicon supply and downstream market demand, and the polysilicon prices in the subsequent market will remain sluggish for the long term.

Wafer

The difference between the quotation trends for mono and multi-Si wafers has been widened this week, and the prices for multi-Si wafers have turned sluggish. As disclosed by the quotations of leading businesses, the domestic quotations for mono-Si wafers remain sturdy, whereas the corresponding overseas quotations have slightly risen. In contrast to the continuous inflation between July and August, the domestic prices of mono-Si wafers have been stabilized for two consecutive months, where the domestic average prices for G1 and M6 are maintained at RMB 3.05/pc and RMB 3.2/pc respectively. The overall overseas prices of mono-Si wafers have been marginally increased due to the impact from the exchange rate, where the quotations for G1 and M6 mono-Si wafers have arrived at US$0.4/pc and US$0.42/pc. The average price for multi-Si wafers has been reduced to RMB 1.51/W due to the stagnant downstream for the product and the previous fallback of upstream prices for multi-Si wafers.

Judging by the existing status, the large-scale and high-efficiency trends from end demand have prompted a gradually weakening demand for G1 mono-Si wafers, as well as robust quotations for M6 mono-Si wafer products of ≥166mm, and first-tier businesses have essentially signed for the orders of November. The prices of multi-Si wafers have been constantly loosening since the 4th quarter alongside its weakened demand from the downstream sector, and apart from the smaller reduction for partial high-efficiency products, the prices of other weak-and-semi-strong efficiency products are continuously descending, where the majority of businesses have commented on the substantial pressure in operation.

Cells

Continuing from the trend of last week, the overall market quotations of cells have maintained stability this week. The prices of mono-Si cells remain robust currently due to the prosperous demand for large-scale M6, M10, and M12, and sit firmly at RMB 0.9-0.3/W as the mainstream market price under restricted supply of wafers and the production capacity of cells that has yet to be fully updated. Apart from partial first-tier businesses that have been completely lined up in orders this week, all other businesses have predominantly lined up roughly two weeks of orders, with most orders centralized on M6 cells, which resulted in the relatively robust quotations for cells of M6 and above. A number of businesses are contemplating in increasing prices, though the degree of escalation is limited due to the pressure from modules, thus the average price of the M6 cell is maintained at RMB 0.92/W. On the contrary, the market share of the G1 cell is gradually depleting, where upstream G1 wafer suppliers are shifting to the build to order method, which has the advantages of stable prices and customized quotations, thought the overall G1 cells are sustaining declining prices, and first-tier businesses have preserved negotiation space for quotations.

Middle East and India remain as the primary markets for multi-Si cells, however, the aggravated pandemic status in the latter over the past several weeks has started to restrict the installation progress, which has directly impacted the demand for multi-Si cells. The incessantly contracting domestic production capacity of multi-Si cells has resulted a decline in demand from India, and the overall degree of price reduction remains relatively manageable.

Modules

The quotations for modules have sustained a minor oscillation this week, and module makers have endured apparent pressure. The end demand has been flourishing recently, though the tight supply of auxiliary materials has resulted in the quotation of partial urgent orders of photovoltaic glass to approach RMB 50/㎡. Module makers have been impeded in module shipment as they sustain increasing procurement pressure, and the continuous elevation in module cost has applied substantial pressure on businesses, where a number of second and third-tier businesses have suspended production. The 6 major domestic module makers have appealed that the uncontrolled supply and prices of glass has directly affected the normal production for module makers, and hope to obtain the understanding and support from the government and the end sector by joining hands with each sector of the supply chain in marching towards a healthy development for the photovoltaic market. On the other hand, despite the consecutive inflation of glass between September and October, the market prices of modules have been evidently increased subsequent to the polysilicon incident in mid-year. The module prices have not been significantly altered, where the average price of the 325-335 / 395-405W mono-Si PERC module is at RMB 1.54/W, and the average price of the 355-365 / 425-435W mono-Si PERC module has been upward adjusted to RMB 1.63/W. The continuous increment in module cost caused by the inflation of auxiliary materials this time, as well as the reduction of operating rate, and the anticipated production expansion of glass, have generated an apparent rising trend for the prices of modules during the fourth quarter, and the excess demand status will persist in the short term.

In terms of overseas markets, the pandemic status is currently aggravating in Europe and the US, and more than 10 European countries have amplified on border controls. The exacerbation of the pandemic status may derive pressure for the resumption schedule of end projects and the short-term market sentiment, thus the demand trend for the subsequent market must remain under close observation.

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