China module prices slide to new lows, manufacturers cut production

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From pv magazine Global

The Chinese Module Marker (CMM), the OPIS benchmark assessment for mono PERC modules from China, was assessed at USD 0.123 per W, down USD 0.003/W week on week, while TOPCon module prices fell USD 0.004/W to USD 0.131/W. These new record lows come amid muted year-end demand as module makers cut production.

Prices in China have seen particular declines. While most tier-1 players – including a top 5 solar major – generally offer modules at around the CNY1 ($0.21)/W mark, some sellers lowered prices past that psychologically significant threshold. PERC modules have been offered as low as CNY0.72 ($0.15), multiple manufacturers said.

The winter season is a “weaker period of the year, hence, lower demand,” a solar market veteran said. China’s module makers are trying to clear their inventories, according to a module seller, during this off-season. Before their fiscal year closes in December, Chinese companies are attempting to sell stock and “bump up their revenues,” a different veteran said.

Operating rates are falling in this oversupplied environment. Some medium-sized solar factories are already closing for a break, according to a module maker. Factories in China usually only break during the Spring Festival, and a break now two months ahead of that holiday suggests that “factories don’t have orders,” the module maker said. Module factory operating rates are said to be 50-60%, according to an experienced market observer.

Low prices continue to be on the horizon as 2023 ends and in the year to come. 2024 will be a challenging year, according to a major solar developer. Low prices will persist for a time, with the industry gradually starting to stabilize in 2025 and then recover, the developer said.

OPIS, a Dow Jones company, provides energy prices, news, data, and analysis on gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, LPG/NGL, coal, metals, and chemicals, as well as renewable fuels and environmental commodities. It acquired pricing data assets from Singapore Solar Exchange in 2022 and now publishes the OPIS APAC Solar Weekly Report.

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