On April 1st, Green Energy Expo kicked off in Daegu Gwangyeoksi, South Korea. The three-day exhibition attracts more than 300 international exhibitors and over 40000 visitors every year. Renewable energy topics like solar power, electric vehicles, energy storage systems, and wind powers were the center at 2015’s exhibition.
Capacity of solar PV installations in South Korea has been rapidly growing thanks to lower-cost PV modules and central government’s encouragement. Over 2GW of PV capacity has been installed in the nation by the end of 2014, estimated KOPIA. It is expected to have additional 500MW of new PV installations in 2015, according to certain exhibitors at the show. Nonetheless, international companies except for China and South Korean usually encounter barriers to entering into the South Korean PV market. The Green Energy Expo represented the situation as Chinese and domestic exhibitors dominated the show. Besides, most South Korean PV power plants are non-residential projects so that most PV modules showcased were mainstream modules such as 60-cell modules with 250W/ 255W efficiency. EnergyTrend found that the war of high-efficiency products at Green Energy Expo was not as harsh as at 2015’s PV EXPO in Japan.
However, many South Korean manufacturers seem targeting at the prosperous U.S. PV market. South Korean PV makers are not involved in the endless solar trade wars in recent year, meaning that their tariff-free PV export could be price competitive in the U.S. market. Seizing this opportunity, many of them are planning to increase shipment volume to the U.S. Equipment providers like SCHMID and ASYS also strengthened their appearance through their booths at the Green Energy Expo.
Additionally, facilitating renewable-related innovations, such as airplanes equipped with solar-power batteries, solar-powered LED desk lamp combined with energy-saving devices, were also on display in the solar power zone.
Generally speaking, the price decline of PV modules does cause effects on every market on the globe, reinforcing the tariff-free South Korean PV manufacturers to compete with low-priced PV products made in China. This year’s Green Energy Expo was not as vibrant as previous years’, and so is current South Korean PV market. Yet, South Korean products might be able to pave distinct approaches from China’s and Taiwan’s as long as they can optimize their brand advantages, cut producing costs and improve their technologies.