Solar energy investors stunned by sharp price rises of panels

Solar energy investors, big and small, are troubled by a considerable rebound, over the past couple of months, of solar panel prices, an unanticipated development that has overturned a widely held view that the cost of this technology would just keep falling over time.

Solar panel prices have risen between 10 and 25 percent, depending on the model and manufacturer, from early July to the present, an energypress survey has found.

The survey was conducted on Chinese solar energy systems, nowadays exclusively used in Europe.

Besides the increase in prices, a shortage of solar systems has also developed, requiring investors to wait for deliveries.

The delivery delays and price hikes can be attributed to a number of factors, including a sharp rise in global demand for such technology,  technical issues with existing equipment, as well as a drop in the exchange rate for the US dollar.

This has all made the prospect of finding solar panels in 2020 – at higher prices, too – a daunting task for investors.

Those facing upcoming deadlines for projects are troubled most. For example, local tariffs for PV facilities up to 500 KW will change on November 26. Many investors are seeking to have electrified their projects by then, or at least have officially declared being ready – enough to secure them existing tariff levels if a new licensing procedure is implemented by the aforementioned date.

Some pundits think the upward trajectory in solar panel prices could swing in the opposite direction by the first quarter of 2021, but forecasts are generally being avoided at this stage.

Competition in Greece’s PV sector is intensifying as an increasing number of foreign manufacturers and traders are entering the Greek market to strive for a share of a market that is anticipated to keep growing.