The recently published report The World Market for PV Cells and Modules, reveals that solar PV module shipments grew by over a quarter to more than 8 GW in 2009, but new installations grew just 5-10%.
After Q1 and Q2’s disastrous results, many had in fact expected solar PV shipments to decline. However, following unprecedented growth in Q3 and Q4, results show that module shipments grew by over 25%.
“We are seeing delays of two quarters between a module being shipped and it finally being connected to the grid and therefore being counted as an ‘installation’ in official figures – perhaps longer in very large installations,” says Sam Wilkinson, one of IMS Research’s PV market analysts.
“In addition, we’ve seen that a significant proportion of PV modules were shipped in Q4 in anticipation of an unseasonably strong German market in the first half of 2010. This is likely to have been caused by intense speculation of a cut to the German tariff in July, reversing the country’s normal seasonality,” Wilkinson adds.