By Javier Mestres, Executive Director ISOFOTON Japan LLC
Over the last few weeks, leading international media that cover the photovoltaic industry have reported the increasing potential of the Japanese solar market, backed up by stunning figures.
According to the IHS iSupply consultancy, a total of 1.5 GW in PV capacity was installed in Japan during the first quarter of 2013, up from 0.4 GW in the same period last year. As a result of this 270% increase, the Japanese solar market will overtake the German market as the world’s largest PV market in terms of revenue in 2013. Although China is still expected to be the largest market in 2013 in terms of newly installed PV capacity, the high prices of PV in Japan will drive Japan to become the world’s largest market in terms of revenue. If overall installed PV systems are about to grow by 4%, Japanese installed capacity will grow by 82% compared to the same period of 2012, reaching 20 billion $USD.
With the new feed-in-tariff implemented last year, the Japanese renewable energy market has been attracting increased attention from across the globe. ISOFOTON established a Japanese subsidiary in March 2012 in order to respond to the rapidly expanding market. According to EPIA, the Japanese market will reach 2,500 MW in solar installations by the end of 2013 and Japan will become the world’s third largest solar market, with more than 1.8 trillion yen in investment (14.8 billion Euros.)
PV EXPO Japan 2013: A platform to present our expertise and know- how
During the PV Expo 2013 held in Tokyo in February 2013, ISOFOTÓN was able to connect with many international developers. The event is part of the World Smart Energy Week, and was the second event focused on photovoltaic energy since the feed-in-tariff went into effect. Attendance grew substantially this year with 1,890 exhibitors and more than 125,000 visitors from 65 countries, and it was a lively and useful business platform. At a time when many European countries have cut back support for renewable technologies, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has made strong efforts to increase the use of renewable power generation and reduce dependence on atomic energy. Before the Fukushima nuclear meltdown in 2011, atomic plants provided about 30 percent of Japan’s power.
Japanese banks have started to lend to foreign renewable power plant developers when they saw their commitment to produce locally and develop synergies and alliances with local partners. ISOFOTON is a clear example of this, as the company has already took part in its first megasolar project in Japan. We partnered with five other companies to jointly invest in installing a 1.25MW PV plant in Ube Techno Park that was completed earlier this year. We see this as just the beginning of the enormous potential for ISOFOTON’s solar solutions in Japan and we continue to position ourselves for growth in the market. PV industry is especially supported by government as Development Bank of Japan Inc. (owned by the Japanese Government) is currently facilitating low- interest loans to solar developers that will borrow residential rooftop surfaces to install small-sized PV systems.
Briefly, Japan is a country that has everything to attract not only investor`s interest but PV industry`s attention.
ISOFOTON to make a full-scale entry into Japan´s Mega PV market
Spanish PV maker, ISOFOTON (HQ in Madrid, Angel Lui Serrano, President and CEO) announced that it will make a full-scale entry into Japan market with its mega-solar projects. This year the company plans to develop projects of 2,000kW in Hiroshima, wich is a total of 3,600KW worth of PV projects. The power generated in Ibarakii is planned to be sold to TEPCO, with 42yen/kWh FIT since was contracted before April.
By 2014, ISOFOTON also plans to develop over 20,000kW by doing several projects of 2,000kW scale in over 10 locations. It will also sell 24,000kW of its PV sell models produced in Malaga in Japan.
The company established its Japan branch in March 2014 as ISOFOTON Japan LLC. Together with its partmer, clean Venture 21, it sells residentaial solar modules. For industrial use, from November 2012, it has partnered with several integrators and completed the Ube Techno Park in Yamaguchi with generating capability of 1,344kW.
ISOFOTON has its productio line in Malaga, Spain, and in Ohio, U.S. productcing over 280.000KW worth of PV panles, and sells in over 60 cpuntries wordwide.
Natural Energy: Spanish company to build 44MW worth of mega-solar in multiple locations in Japan Japan may become a mega-solar hunting ground for global corporations due to its favorable FIT. A German
corporation announced its plans to develop a total of 9 projects worth 945MW. And now, a Spanish corporation announced its plans to develop over 44MW in the next 2 years. It looks like Japan’s 42 yen FIT for mega-solar is an attractive deal for foreign entities. While prices of solar modules, power conditioners are becoming indifferent all around, FIT is double in
difference with Europe with advanced FIT regulations and that of Japan. In conclusion, for companies, Japan is a profitable market compared to Europe. ISOFOTON on April 18th, announced its mega-solar project plans.
Their project scale is grand. The company plans to develop over 44MW of mega-solar in Japan between 2013 and 2014, in which 24MW through sales of modules, and rest by developing several projects of 2MW in scale,
totaling 20 MW.* Two projects are already materializing with its locations identified. One is in Ibaraki, a 2MW mega-solar. The electricity generated is planned to be sold to TEPCO with 42 yen FIT. The project will begin starting from Q4 of 2013. ISOFOTON also has a plan to develop a project in Hiroshima, a 1.6MW mega-solar. ISOFOTON established its Japan branch in 2013, and currently sells residential modules. It was also involved with a project in Yamaguchi prefecture with 5 other partners to develop the Ube Techno Park, a 1.344 MW mega-solar, which just completed construction in the beginning of 2013.