The current progress of downstream PV system installation in Taiwan is considerably lagging behind the 2.2GW yearly installed PV capacity targeted by the Bureau of Energy, Ministry of Economic Affairs in 2020, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. Taiwan’s cumulative installed PV capacity reached a mere 410MW during the first five months of the year. Furthermore, recent legislative changes by the Council of Agriculture have made an impact on Taiwan’s PV industry, meaning the Bureau’s target of 2.2GW this year is a tall order for the market to reach. However, total PV module shipment and inverter shipment in Taiwan have each closed in on the 1GW mark in 1H20, a historical high for both sectors.
TrendForce analyst Sharon Chen indicates that the Taiwanese inverter industry saw significant reshuffling in 1H20, with Sungrow and SMA, a major inverter manufacturer, receiving orders for large-scale PV projects in Central Taiwan and Southern Taiwan, respectively. As such, Sungrow and SMA both entered the top five list of inverter manufacturers. Power optimizer manufacturer SolarEdge once again registered superb performance in 1H20, maintaining its spot on the list for the third year in a row. On the other hand, KACO made an appearance in the top 10 list for the first time since 2017 by riding on the momentum of its channel advantages gained after the acquisition by Siemens in 2019.
Cumulative capacity of PV module shipment approached the 1GW mark in 1H20 as Motech entered the top five list for the first time
The historical high in PV module shipment can be attributed to the fact that PV module orders deferred in 2019 must be fulfilled by module manufacturers in early 2020. In addition, module manufacturers were asked to deliver advance shipments in 1H20 in order for certain large-scale PV projects to make their 2H20 grid-connection deadlines. These factors worked in tandem to drive PV module shipment close to 1GW. With regards to the shipment performances by module manufacturers in 1H20, the Taiwanese PV module market showed a noticeable three-way dominance by URE, TSEC, and AUO. Also worth noting is that Motech entered the top five list for the first time, likely because it was able to capture large-scale PV project orders from project developers.
Large-scale PV projects remain the key to determining the 2H20 rankings of module manufacturers and inverter manufacturers in the Taiwanese market. Although the Bureau of Energy stays confident that Taiwan is able to meet its targeted 2.2GW goal by the end of the year, actual capacity is expected to fall short of this target by 1800MW, judging by the status of market developments from June to the end of 2020. For Taiwan to reach the yearly target, an additional 250MW of PV capacity must be installed per month on average from June to December. This amount is highly unlikely to be feasible. Moreover, the legislative changes made by the Council of Agriculture are now substantially more stringent on PV projects than the past. Therefore, TrendForce forecasts cumulative installed PV capacity in 2020 to be similar to 2019 figures, if no noticeable improvements were to take place in 3Q20.