China dominates solar industry; Country now leads in photovoltaics manufacturing

  • China is now the leading solar panel manufacturer in the world.
  • It supplied half of the world’s total solar panels back in 2017.
  • China’s growth in the solar industry has been staggering and justifies it being the top player in the industry.
  • Despite this, China actually wants to slow down and decelerate its growth.

While it may have been true that it was God who made a man, everything else was perhaps made in China. At least, that is what most people would think if they found out that their iPhones, computers, clothes, cooking materials, and even solar panels could have that ubiquitous and omnipresent “Made in China” tag.

It can’t be helped, the country’s capacity for labor and factories is just staggering, hence why a lot of solar power companies– even in the US, are outsourcing solar panels from China. Such manufacturing prowess could have contributed to another of China’s achievements right now, which is dominating the solar power industry with, specifically the photovoltaics (PV) industry.

PV you say?

Okay, wait a minute, what is PV you ask? Well, that is just a more technical term for solar panels. You see, PV is a term which covers the conversion of light into electricity, which is basically what solar panels do. Most solar panel models are of this model and make, as such, solar panels and PV could be interchangeable depending on the context.

Now that that is out of the way, let us discuss the dragon in the room, which is China. In just a span of a few short years, the country has entered the solar industry and rapidly dominated it. Since 2002, China’s PV manufacturing and distribution for solar panel technology have been steadily growing, so much so, that just last year, over half of the world’s PV shipments were provided by China.

As such, one small production hiccup in China’s PV manufacturing could actually affect the solar industry in a domino effect. In terms of numbers, 15 years of China’s growth in the PV industry saw each year making as much as a 97 percent compound growth annually. Essentially, this growth rate makes them 15 times as bigger than when they first began, perhaps even more so, enough to be hailed as the leading PV manufacturer and distributor right now.

Too fast for China too

However, too much of a good thing can be bad, this much was understood by China’s Central Government. The government wing in question actually wanted the country’s solar panel industry growth to slow down. Apparently, the central government of the country wanted to disperse a lot of the efforts of PV production to the provinces, therefore making them more available throughout the country.

Despite this plan from the central government of the country, things are not going as slow as they would have wanted, as a testament to just how big their market is for PV. It will take a while for China to achieve its desired results for its PV manufacturing.

This brings us to wonder what might happen if China were to cut back on its production. The demands are still ongoing and solar energy is still a highly viable electricity source, especially for businesses and corporations. Hence, China’s slowing down could eventually result in a flat market trend, which means fewer supplies internationally. In the worst cases, the solar power market could potentially shrink in the later part of the year.

As good as it is, the solar industry is still quite a young market, meaning it is very much subject to collapses and other market trends. Time will tell what will happen should the biggest player in the solar industry make some changes to its production capacity.

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