Tuesday, July 21, 2009

China offers big subsidy to solar power developers (STP; TSL; YGE)

From Reuters:
China has launched an unprecedented plan to offer hefty subsidies to independent solar power projects, a move likely to boost the solar sector.

The move would benefit industry firms including Suntech Power Holdings Co Ltd (STP.N), Yingli Green Energy Holding Co Ltd (YGE.N), Trina Solar Ltd (TSL.N) and JA Solar Holdings Co Ltd, analysts said.

"This is very positive for the solar sector and positive for solar stocks out there," said Christine Wang, an analyst with HSBC.

Beijing's bid to boost the solar energy sector could draw more than $10 billion in private funding for projects and put China on track to become a leading market for solar equipment in the next three years. [ID:nHKG193]

As the world's top greenhouse gas polluter, China is trying to catch up in a global race to find alternatives to fossil fuels, blamed for carbon emissions affecting the planet's climate.

The Ministry of Finance said the government will subsidise 50 percent of investment for solar power projects as well as relevant power transmission and distribution systems that connect to grid networks.

For independent photovoltaic power generating systems in remote regions that have no power supply, the subsidy will rise to 70 percent, the ministry said in an announcement on its website (www.mof.gov.cn).

Grid companies are required to buy all surplus electricity output from solar power projects that generate primarily for the developers' own needs, at similar rates to benchmark on-grid tariffs set for coal-fired power generators....MORE