Solar in China: NEA officially releases China’s 13th Five-Year-Plan for solar development, confirms 110 GW target
China’s National Energy Administration (NEA) officially released the 13th Five-Year-Plan (2016–2020) for solar development on December 16th, 2016, Asia Europe Clean Energy (Solar) Advisory Co. Ltd. (AECEA) reports.
The “plan” includes the 110 GW solar target, split into 105 GW of solar PV and 5 GW of Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) which was officially known since later October, and re-confirms that by the end of 2020 the total installed solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity will exceed 105 GW.
No specific target for distributed generation
According to AECEA, a surprise however is that the now published “plan” no longer contains a specific target for distributed generation (DG), contrary to the October announcement where a 60 GW target was communicated. In light of todays below 10 GW of DG, a more than six-fold increase in the coming four years would have very likely proven being unrealistic, AECEA notes.
Nevertheless, DG does enjoy as expected a very prominent position in the just released “plan”. In this context, e.g. no less than 100 DG demonstration zones shall be set up across the country and within each zone 50% of existing buildings and 80% of all to be built buildings shall deploy roof-top systems. At the same time new business models shall be created designed to stimulate demand in the DG segment.
Another surprise is that out of 31 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities just 11 have been selected as so-called target regions for presumably continued large-scale PV deployment, i.e. both ground-mounted utility-scale and DG for a total 99 GW.
To date, favoured destinations like Yunnan or Xinjiang and Gansu Province in particular are not explicitly mentioned. However, the latter are expected to serve as so-called “transmission corridors” from West to East China.
“Top-Runner-Program” expanded; FIT’s are expected to drop
Introduced last year, the competitive bidding mechanism based “Top-Runner-Program” expanded from initially 1 GW in Datong/Shanxi to 5.5 GW across multiple provinces this year, thus accounting for approx. 30% of this year’s guiding target of 18.1 GW.
As anticipated the “Top-Runner-Program” remains a prominent feature of China’s domestic market landscape in future.
By 2020, FIT’s are expected to drop by more than 50% compared to 2015 levels, thus achieving grid parity. Finally, the wording within the “plan” equally suggests that perhaps no FIT’s will be granted beyond 2020, if grid parity indeed will have been realized.
SOURCE: AECEA through Solarserver