New Cape Town facility could see solar prices plummet

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Adding a bunch of solar photo-voltaic (PV) panels to your house could decrease your dependence on Eskom, but they haven’t always been readily available in South Africa.

Wuxi Suntech Power, one of the largest PV panel producers in the world, is trying to make access to solar PV panels a bit easier locally by announcing the opening of a warehouse in Cape Town that will be able to store 500 kW of solar PV modules. The new warehouse will be expanded at a later stage to house 1 MW in panels.

Although Suntech only opened its doors in South African last year, it has supplied more than 8 GWs of photovoltaic panels to more than 80 countries since 2001. In February last year, it passes the 25 million mark in number of solar modules shipped worldwide.

“The opening of a local warehouse in Cape Town will allow Suntech to increase its sales capacity in South Africa, and in the South African Development Community, which serves as a free trade zone,” said Joey Zheng, regional director to Suntech’s Africa and South Asia markets, in a press statement.

He added that it decided to open a warehouse in South Africa due to a larger demand for PV panels, especially from larger operations.

“With a growing number of sales to larger scale projects, we will now be able to assure that all of our customers will have their products within 24 hours after purchase, whereas previously it took 40 days for modules to be delivered from China.”

In a recent transaction, Suntech was responsible for the supply of 100 MW PV panels to two different projects for the Department of Energy’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme‘s (REIPPPP) bid round.

[image – CC by 2.0/John Gwynne]

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