China has surpassed Germany as the world’s largest photovoltaic (PV) market, according to the Global New Energy Development Report 2014.
During 2013, the world installed 38.7 GW of new capacity, bringing the global total to 140.6 GW.
China was responsible for nearly one-third (12 GW) of the new capacity, marking a 232% increase over the previous year in the country.
In recent years, China’s PV export market slowed in European and American markets, due to lower subsidies and protectionist policies in those areas. Last year, however, marked something of a turning point as solar exports to Asia jumped 124% ($5.5 billion) and 387% to Africa ($570 million). Meanwhile, exports to Europe fell 62% ($3.72 billion).
Since 2012, Chinese regulators have been keen to develop the PV market, implementing policies like the State Council’s Opinions on Promoting the Healthy Development of the PV industry, which have proven beneficial in growing the sector.