ROTTERDAM, NETHERLANDS (Aug. 25, 1:15 p.m. ET) — The Italian market for solar photovoltaics (PV) is set to become the largest in the world, after the country installed three times the volume of the current global leader, Germany, in the first half of the year, according to a report from SolarPlaza BV.
In 2010, Italy installed 2,319,000 kW of solar power, supported by a feed-in tariff which provides financial incentives for consumers and business customers who install a solar power system, says the report.
The biggest market in the world in 2010 was Germany, which accounted for 50 percent of the global market in 2010. The country installed almost eight gigawatts of new solar PV power and, in one year, 40m solar panels covered 50m m2.
The other countries in the top ten were the Czech Republic (1,151,000 kW of Solar PV power installed in 2010), Japan (990,979 kW), the US (918,000 kW), France (719,000 kW), China (400,000 kW), Spain (392,000 kW), Australia (383,300 kW) and Belgium (357,860 kW).
Looking forward, Rotterdam-based SolarPlaza says the Czech Republic will drop out of the top 10 this year as the government is reducing the amount of financial incentives available. Japan may also creep higher in the table following the Fukushina disaster earlier this year, it adds.
China and India are also set to become major players. India has introduced the National Solar Mission and China recently announced its own feed-in tariff system.
Other new markets that will become more prominent are the Philippines, Israel, Canada and South Africa.