"Even when accounting for already-planned module capacity additions, this could lead to a supply crunch toward the end of the decade," Anand said in his report. "Whereas an ideal market has excess module capacity of between 30% and 70%, our base case forecast results in 26% excess capacity in 2017 – a scenario that would likely lead to price pressure and potential module shortages in some markets."
By the end of this year, IHS Research predicts that PV demand will grow at a double-digit rate of 16% to 25% and installations in the range of 53GW to 57GW.
Geographically, the largest markets for solar consumption are China, Japan and the U.S., while the largest contributors in terms of growth will be China, the U.S. and India.
"China faces stiff competition from Singapore, Taiwan, Malaysia and the U.S. on business environment and PV manufacturing support scores," Anand said. "As widespread manufacturing support like low-cost loans and cheap land for solar manufacturing by the government, especially for domestic companies, scales back, China runs the risk of slipping from the top-ranked position."
China isn't likely to lose its spot to the U.S., though, as the Asian economic giant enjoys a significant cost advantage over the U.S.
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