The top 20 module suppliers to the solar photovoltaic (PV) industry are guiding an increase in annual shipments of more than 30% in 2014, according to the latest NPD Solarbuzz Module Tracker Quarterly report. Leading Chinese module suppliers Trina Solar, Canadian Solar, ReneSola, and Jinko Solar are forecasting the most aggressive growth in shipments during 2014, with the upper-end of guidance exceeding 40%.
“The top 20 module suppliers to the PV industry account for two-thirds of global shipments, and they provide the leading indicators of industry growth and pricing trends,” noted Ray Lian, senior analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. “Assuming the leading suppliers achieve the forecasted growth rates, end-market demand in 2014 will approach 50 GW.”
Yingli Green Energy is forecasting the highest shipment volume in 2014, with the upper end of shipments at 4.2 GW. This shipment level would result in Yingli Green Energy heading the annual shipment rankings for PV suppliers for the third consecutive year.
Leading Japanese silicon-based PV module suppliers Sharp Solar and Kyocera forecast a 15% increase in shipments in 2014, reflecting continued strength in the Japanese solar PV market. Sharp Solar and Kyocera command strong market shares in their domestic markets.
”In addition to benefiting from strong shipment growth in 2014, the top 20 module suppliers are also forecast to increase profit margins,” added Lian. “Growth is driven mainly by cost reductions in manufacturing, and lower capital expenditure on new manufacturing plants.”