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EU’s solar developers call for the development of the industrial strategy

1 February 2022

In light of Europe’s exponentially growing solar power market, eight leading European solar developers convened by Solar Power Europe have appealed to the European Commission and the European Council to request the development of a European strategy for the solar PV value chain in 2022.

Even though Europe is a global leader in future solar cell technologies, the continent needs to produce more solar cells and panels. According to the developers, as the solar PV capacity grows, the need to ensure the strategic resilience of the solar value chain and reinvestment in a critical solar manufacturing capacity becomes key too.

“An industry can only develop sustainably if it has a comprehensive vision for its supply chain and we must continue to expand the EU solar industry to meet the continent’s climate commitments”, said Walburga Hemetsberger, CEO of SolarPower Europe, echoing the concerns of CEOs and senior Directors or other Executives of Akuo Energy, Amarenco Group, BayWa r.e., EDF, Enel Green Power, ENGIE, Iberdrola, and Vattenfall Solar. “Following the work of the European Solar Initiative, European solar developers are calling on the Commission and the Competitiveness Council to support the redevelopment of critical manufacturing capacities, and endorse a strategy for the EU solar PV value chain in 2022”, she added.

The European Union needs a comprehensive strategy to redevelop globally competitive and innovative solar factories in Europe, noted Naomi Chevillard, Senior Policy Advisor at SolarPower Europe. “This includes unlocking industrial investments into industrial projects and paving the way for a stable solar market in Europe while ensuring a level playing field for EU companies. With the right actions in place, a 20-GW manufacturing capacity could create 19,000 clean, green manufacturing jobs. This will be crucial to fighting climate change while protecting the strategic autonomy of Europe’s energy,” she added.

Current market forecasts anticipate 585 gigawatts (GW) of solar installed by 2030 which is 20 per cent higher than the European Commission’s prediction of 479 GW. By 2025 this growth will sustain half a million solar jobs, and support millions of additional jobs in the renewable hydrogen and battery industries, according to Solar Power Europe.

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