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Chinese PV Inverter Shipments Rise As Prices And Revenue Decline

Despite an increase in solar PV inverter shipments to China in 2014, revenues still dropped 6% due to a decline in inverter prices.

Solar PV inverter shipments to China in 2014 increased nearly 18%, according to IHS, reaching 13.3 GW, but because prices have dropped, revenues dropped 6%. In fact, IHS notes that the “price wars among Chinese suppliers” have become so fierce, many suppliers and companies have been forced to drop from the market entirely.

One of the companies to reap the greatest reward was Huawei, who only launched their inverter portfolio in late 2013, but still managed to become the second largest solar PV inverter supplier in China in 2014, behind Sungrow, who only barely managed to hold on to their first place position.

“The PV inverter product mix has begun to shift as string inverters made huge gains in 2014, largely owing to Huawei’s aggressive promotional and marketing campaigns,” said Frank Xie, senior analyst for IHS Technology. “There is also a narrowing price gap between mainstream central inverters and string inverters that are increasingly used in large commercial- and utility-scale PV systems in China. Despite losing share, large central and turn-key inverters will continue to play an important role in the Chinese market from 2015 to 2019.”


The figures come from the 2015 edition of the IHS PV Inverter Market in China report, which also reveals that there are likely to be very little business opportunities for international inverter suppliers in China from 2015 to 2019.

Similarly, the report reveals that China’s distributed PV progress fell short in 2014, falling well behind the planned 8 GW of distributed PV deployment, with only 2 GW being deployed, “due to ineffective business models and high system costs.”

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