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Report: Chinese solar exports grew 64% in 2022

May 23, 2023

China’s solar exports grew 64% to $52bn in 2022 despite global trade tensions, according to latest analysis from Wood Mackenzie.

China’s exports were mainly dominated by modules in 2022 – Europe remained the country’s top export market for the kit with 56% share, according to Wood Mackenzie findings.

But solar cells saw more than 100% growth as the global PV market expanded, with south-east Asia taking 31% share of China’s exports.

US tariffs on Chinese-made modules have driven production to south-east Asia, where many manufacturing facilities import cells from China.

"Trade tensions have taken a back seat to high power prices driven by the energy crisis, and this is causing consumers and developers from around the world to buy more solar panels from China,” said Alex Whitworth, research director from Wood Mackenzie.

Chinese modules kept their cost-competitiveness against other markets in 2022 and were up to 57% cheaper than US and EU produced modules.

This price gap was mainly driven by material cost, where China holds the advantage due to low energy costs, scale advantages and government support, whereas US and EU solar module manufacturing is not competitive without subsidies.

[Staff Report]

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