National Survey Report of PV Power Applications in China


The PV power systems market is defined as the market of all nationally installed (terrestrial) PV applications with a PV capacity of 40 W or more. A PV system consists of modules, inverters, batteries and all installation and control components for modules, inverters and batteries. Other applications such as small mobile devices are not considered in this report.

Applications for Photovoltaics

In 2019, even though China’s photovoltaic installed capacity dropped again, the newly added and accumulated photovoltaic installed capacity continued to rank first in the world. In 2019, China’s newly installed grid-connected photovoltaic capacity reached 30.1GW, a year-on-year decrease of 31.99%, of which the installed capacity of centralized photovoltaic power plants was 17.9GW, a year-on-year decrease of 22.9%; the installed capacity of distributed photovoltaic power plants was 12.2GW, a year-on-year increase of 17.3%. As of 2019, the cumulative grid-connected photovoltaic capacity reached 204.3GW, an increase of 17.1%. Among them, the cumulative installed capacity of centralized photovoltaic power stations is 141.67GW, and the cumulative installed capacity of distributed photovoltaic power stations is 62.63GW. The annual photovoltaic power generation capacity was 22.43 billion kWh, accounting for 3.1% of China’s total annual power generation (723.41 billion kWh), an increase of 0.5% year-on-year.

Total photovoltaic power installed

Annual PV power installed during calendar year 2019

Other PV market information

PV power and the broader national energy market

Cost breakdown of PV installations

The cost breakdown of a typical 5-10 kW roof-mounted, grid-connect, distributed PV system on a residential single-family house and a typical >10 MW Grid-connected, ground-mounted, centralized PV systems at the end of 2019 is presented in Table 2 and Table 3, respectively.The cost structure presented is from the customer’s point of view. I.e. it does not reflect the installer companies’ overall costs and revenues. The “average” category in Table 2 and Table 3 represents the average cost for each cost category and is the average of the typical cost structure. The average cost is taking the whole system into account and summarizes the average end price to customer. The “low” and “high” categories are the lowest and highest cost that has been reported within each segment. These costs are individual posts, i.e. summarizing these costs do not give an accurate system price.

National targets for PV

Looking forward to 2020, China’s new photovoltaic installed capacity is expected to be between 32GW and 45GW, and the installed capacity trend is stable.From a domestic perspective, the scale of various sectors of the industry has grown steadily, the export value and export volume have both increased, the amount of photovoltaic power generation has increased, and the rate of waste light has decreased. The conversion efficiency of industrialized P-type PERC single crystal and N-type single crystal cells both exceed 22%.It is expected that the power of module products will exceed 500W, and the market share of monocrystalline will be reserved; high-efficiency cell using PERC technology will gradually replace traditional cell technology; module technologies such as half-cells and shingles will gradually follow the same way as bifacial cell technology Increase market share.

Direct support policies for PV installations

In 2019, the “531” policy of 2018 was continued, and the newly installed photovoltaic capacity remained declining, but photovoltaics were still the renewable energy source with the largest newly installed capacity. Continuing the policy of 2018, the national policy adjustments related to photovoltaic power generation mainly include the following aspects: adjustment and innovation of scale management mechanism, continuous decline in electricity prices and subsidies based on cost reduction, large-scale construction of large-scale projects, and strengthening Market environment supervision, and at the same time, many important mechanisms such as the restrictive distributed power generation market transaction mechanism and the renewable energy consumption mechanism are also being formulated and promoted.

Development plan and target

2019 is the first year of the wind and solar power generation market that focuses on bidding projects and non-subsidized projects. Among the first batch of non-subsidized projects announced in May 2019, photovoltaic installed capacity is 14,780 MW. In addition to 1470 MW distributed market mainly focus on photovoltaic power generation. The list of bidding projects for this year was announced in July 2019, including centralized power stations and industrial and commercial distributed photovoltaic projects, with an installed capacity of 22,790 MW.The 2020 construction policy for photovoltaic power generation projects were introduced in March, basically continuing the 2019 mechanism. Bidding projects, non-subsidized projects of photovoltaic power plants and industrial and commercial distributed photovoltaic, household photovoltaics will be the main part of new domestic arrangements and new grid-connected installations in 2020.

Project management

Bidding allocation projects have shown their effectiveness in reducing electricity prices and subsidies, and discovering price demand.With the support of the policy, the domestic household photovoltaic market began to accelerate in the second half of 2017. Some leading companies regard the household photovoltaic market as one of their main businesses. There are also a large number of small and medium-sized enterprises involved in household photovoltaic sales, installation and after-sales services and other businesses, so maintaining a relatively stable and continuous household photovoltaic market is also one of the policy goals.

Taxation policy

In 2019, reducing the value-added tax rate once again has reduced the cost of photovoltaic power generation to a certain extent, but the preferential policy of 50% of the value-added tax on photovoltaic power generation has not been extended. In April 2019, the state once again adjusted the original 16% value-added tax rate to 13%. According to the investment level of photovoltaic power generation from 2019 to 2020, even if the impact on equipment prices is not considered, the cost of photovoltaic power generation can still be reduced by about 2%.

Development space and power consumption

On May 10, 2019, the National Development and Reform Commission and the National Energy Administration jointly issued the “Notice on Establishing and Improving the Guarantee Mechanism for Renewable Energy Power Consumption” to establish a development mechanism led by renewable energy power consumption through certain binding weights and responsibilities. Especially in the early days of the “14th Five-Year Plan”, when the conditions for accessing the Internet without subsidies are generally available and the subsidies are fully eliminated, consumption will be the most important factor affecting its development speed and scale. The implementation of the weighting of responsibilities is directly linked to the process of power market construction, especially the power marketization and trading system. In addition, it has also considered the connection with renewable energy green power certificates and energy efficiency assessment systems.

PV module

In 2019, the total production capacity of PV module was about 98.6GW, and the output was 83.4GW, a year-on-year growth of 12.3%, accounting for about 64.5% of global production, mostly crystalline silicon PV module in terms of product type.The value of PV module export amounted to approximately US$12.99 billion in 2018, up 24.4% year-on-year, accounting for 80.6% of total PV product exports, up 8.7 percentage points year- on- year; export volume was approximately 41.6GW, an increase rate of 32.1%.

PV cell and module production and production capacity information for 2019

Manufacturers and suppliers of other components

PV inverters (for grid-connection and stand-alone systems) and their typical prices

Under the policy guidance, China’s new photovoltaic installed capacity decreased in 2019 compared with the previous year, and the annual new installed capacity was approximately 30.11GW. Among them, the new installed capacity of centralized photovoltaics was 17.91GW, and that of distributed photovoltaics was 12.2GW. The new installed capacity of centralized and distributed photovoltaics declined for two consecutive years since 2017. Taking into account the inverter supply cycle and project transfer, the actual shipment of inverters in the domestic photovoltaic market in 2019 is about 33.5GW. According to statistics from the China Photovoltaic Industry Association (CPIA), the total domestic inverter output in 2018 was about 73.5GW (excluding the output of foreign brands, about 12GW), an increase of 11.9% year-on- year.

Supporting structures

Due to the low market threshold of the traditional photovoltaic support industry, with the rapid development of the national photovoltaic industry, the number of companies participating in the support structure has increased sharply, market competition is fierce, product quality is unbalanced, and the overall profit industry development speed is not high.The characteristics of China’s supporting structure industry are: the industry concentration has further increased, the average profit rate of the industry has decreased, the industry has moved to overseas markets, and the development of the tracking system has accelerated.


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