Written by Nani Pradeepan, P.Eng.
As the new year dawn, businesses are looking forward to 2014. Among them is the solar industry, which is anticipating continued growth into the new year as international markets continue to expand.
At least one industry research firm has taken a bullish approach anticipating that the global level of solar installations could reach 49 gigawatts by the end of 2014. And another research firm anticipates that the world will have 43 gigawatts of solar panels installed by the end of 2014. Either way both companies are showing strong and stable growth for the industry.
Market conditions have stabilized for the solar industry over the past few years, following a period of wild growth, which led first to undersupply then oversupply of solar panels by photovoltaic manufacturers in particular. Manufacturing over-capacity and pricing erosion within the PV industry was previously a key factor in limiting annual growth to 10 percent to 20 percent between 2011 and 2013. With a more stable pricing environment and the prospects of increased end-market globalization, research firms forecasts a return to annual growth above 30 percent for the PV industry in 2014. It also anticipated that during that six-month period in 2014, 22 gigawatts of solar panels will be installed.