Latin America Solar Market Flourishes In 2016, Is Expected To Continue In 2017

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Latin America’s solar PV market has had an impressive few years, and new analysis from GTM Research predicts that the region’s solar market is only going to continue growing over the next few years, and could see over 10 GW installed in 2021, up from 1.4 GW in 2015.

GTM Research published its Latin America PV Playbook for the third quarter last week, which promises continued growth in the region’s solar PV market. Latin America installed 1.4 GW of new solar in 2015, and GTM is predicting that the region is on track to beat that, by installing 1.8 GW in 2016, bringing the region’s cumulative solar PV capacity up to over 4 GW.

However, GTM’s predictions for solar capacity additions in 2016 are down on predictions it made back in June, in which GTM suggested in that quarter’s Latin America PV Playbook that Latin America was on track to install 2.2 GW of new solar PV in 2016. It is also well down on predictions put forward by IHS Markit back in July, which expected Latin America to install 2.7 GW of solar in 2016 — though at the same time, the global analysts warned of challenges remaining for the region.

The report also highlights the increasing share of global yearly solar PV demand, which last year sat at 2.6%, is expected to hit 3.4% this year, and will reach as high as 9.3% in 2018.

Latin America PV Demand 2010-2021E


Chile, Mexico, and Argentina all emerged as leading players. Solar played a key role in energy auctions in Chile and Mexico: In August, even though solar only achieved a relatively small portion of the auctioned generation on offer, what was secured set a new low solar price record of only 2.91¢/kWh (though that price has since been beaten). GTM predicts Chile’s future solar outlook as “Neutral.” Meanwhile, GTM’s outlook for Mexico is “Strong” — unsurprising, considering that solar dominated Mexico’s second renewable energy auction, taking away 2.4 GW, leading GTM to suggest that “The belief now exists that solar can win tremendous capacity for years to come.”

The report predicts that Argentina and Columbia are both set to cut into the share of Latin America PV held by the big three — Brazil, Chile, and Mexico — with both countries doing much to set up solar to succeed.

Latin American Markets’ Share of Annual Regional PV Demand 2016E-2021E


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Joshua S Hill

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (, and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at for more.

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