This week, Spain’s Department of Industry sent a proposal to the National Energy Commission to raise the target from 400 MW up to 1200 MW and to reduce the feed-in tariff for solar electricity. In September 2007, the 85% mark of this 400 MW objective was reached. PV developers will now have until the end of September 2008 to get their projects connected to the grid in order to make use of the current feed-in tariff of 44 eurocents per kilowatthour of solar electricity fed into the grid. Interestingly, no cap in the number of MWs is regulated in the Royal Decreto 661/2007 for this one year period. There are rumours that the new feed-in tariff will be decreased to around 0.31 eurocents. Yet nothing is official regarding the feed-in tariff for projects connected to the grid after September 2008. This will lead to a further explosion of Spanish solar PV park project developments in the coming months. Both developers and investors see this one year period as a unique chance to finish as many projects as possible under the current attractive feed-in tariff. The results could be a further steep growth of several hundreds of megawatts of new solar park projects until September 2008. The fact is that several international module suppliers are sold out until Q1 in 2008, mainly due to the enormous demand from Spain.
Long term market perspective is good
The long term perspective for the Spanish market is good as well. Although everybody in the Spanish market seems sure about a decrease in the tariff of 10-25%, this will not have to effect the market growth. Due to the enormous growth of the solar industry in 2007 and 2008, module prices are expected to go down. And in case developers are ready to hand in some of their current attractive margins, the Spanish market will remain more attractive than the world’s largest market: Germany. Furthermore, one may expect that experience built up in recent years will pay off in lower turnkey price levels for solar park projects. Finally, international investors and energy equity funds have discovered Spain as an attractive market for solid investments. As more projects come on-grid, Spain is building a solid track record. For investors, this learning curve and continuity in regulation are very important issues. Of course, the offered return on investment of 10% and more in 25 years is convincing as well. All of this will bring Spain next year into the position of the world’s second largest market.
Deal-making event for developers and investors
In order to facilitate business in these hectic market circumstances, SolarPlaza is organizing a second dedicated networking and deal-making event in Madrid, from 6 to 7 November. The purpose of this event is to explore investment opportunities and to match the Spanish PV project developers with the growing group of national and international investors and renewable energy equity funds. The focus will be on the large solar park projects or ‘huertas solares’. On the first day several speakers will elaborate on the new legislation (expected to be officially published in a few weeks), experiences of developers with large scale project development, financing opportunities by banks and the experiences of international investors. The first day will also offer an optional visit to the solar park project of one of the offering PV developers. The focus on the second day is deal making, with presentations by developers offering their best solar park projects and investors offering their equity. The organisation is in the hands of SolarPlaza, which previously organised international PV trade missions to Spain, China, Italy, Greece and California. Last September it organized a conference on global market demand, in Milan. SolarPlaza selected PV project developers from its personal network in Spain to promote their projects in Madrid.
Participation is open for Spanish developers, international investors and anyone interested in exploring PV business opportunities in Spain. This event will include informal lunches and dinners for personal networking. As proven in previous business events, the intensive contacts with other committed international business people will offer an effective and enjoyable way to explore business opportunities, not only during the presentation session, but even more so during discussions and the informal dinners.
The all-inclusive fee for the completely organised PV-Investment two-day event is € 1,595,- including a one-night stay in a 5-star hotel, with breakfast, lunches and dinners. The details and a registration form are available on the website www.solarplaza.com.
Contact: Johan Trip
CGO of SOLARPLAZA
Conradstraat 18 1E-154
P.O. Box 2299
3000 CG Rotterdam
Phone: +31 10 280 9198
Fax: +31 10 280 7265