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Growing European Solar PV Pipeline Awaits Policy Support, Says IHS Markit

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A senior analyst for IHS Markit has concluded that a growing solar PV pipeline in Europe is currently awaiting policy support before it can proceed much further.

Writing in a recent commentary, senior analyst with IHS Markit Josefin Berg discussed the solar PV market in Europe, and found a need for policy support in some regions. The demand for ground-mount solar PV capacity in Europe is nevertheless going to decline by 40% in 2016 over previous years, but is expected to recover after 2018 thanks to a demand for solar PV in currently non-existing markets.

“IHS Markit has observed an evolution of ground-mount PV pipelines in European markets without explicit support for such projects, including Ireland, Spain and Portugal,” said Berg. “As we have seen in other countries in the past, these planned projects could be installed very quickly, as soon as a regulatory framework can ensure sufficient revenues for investors.”

According to Berg, Spain recently announced initial plans for a renewable power tender which could include up to 2 GW of solar power, and is “reviving the hope to deploy PV plants among developers with planned projects in this currently dormant market.” Specifically, there are more than 8 GW worth of solar PV projects currently under development that have secured grid-connection permits over the past four years, but the majority has not advanced any further — of which IHS Markit is currently tracking close to 2 GW that have advanced over the past year towards receiving final construction approval.

There is also movement being made in both Portugal and Ireland — the former seeing 2.3 GW worth of grid-connection applications filed, the latter with 3 GW of projects in various stages of permitting — but there is a need for further policy support to take a majority of these and future projects through to completion.

Though IHS Markit has noticed movement without policy support in these countries, Berg’s conclusions are that for real progress to be made, real policy support is required.

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