Solar photovoltaic module prices to fall only 1% in 2014

Greentech Media Research (GTM, Boston) has released a report which finds that the solar photovoltaic (PV) supply chain has begun to stabilize due to increasing demand, and predicts that global PV module prices will fall only 1% in 2014.

“PV Pricing Outlook 2014” also predicts that prices will rise along the rest of the value chain, with polysilicon prices increasing 25%, wafer prices increasing 11% and cell prices 5%. The company also predicts that strong regional price variations will continue through 2014.

“Looking at a single module price to represent the global market no longer makes sense,” says report author and GTM Research Analyst Jade Jones. “Regional drivers such as import tariffs, incentive levels and technology preference are changing pricing dynamics.”

“The difference between pricing between India and Japan, for example, is almost 30% at present, and we expect regional pricing spreads to persist through 2014.”

In 2015 and beyond, GTM Research expects solar PV module pricing to continue to its ongoing decline.

“While we expect pricing to be stable to up in 2014, there are a number of factors at play which we believe will continue to exert downward pressure on pricing in 2015 and beyond, including manufacturing cost reductions, end-market under-performance, and a generally declining incentive environment that will place pressure on PV system economics,” says GTM Research Senior Analyst Shyam Mehta.

“While there certainly is risk to our view in both directions, we are comfortable in our view that low-cost markets such as India, Chile and China will see module pricing of less than 50 cents per watt by 2017.”