Mono Crystal Leads The 2019 PV Market. Polycrystalline Will Not Have Hope?

- Jan 09, 2019-

Although 2018 has passed, the drastic changes in the photovoltaic industry are continuing. Looking back on 2018, under the influence of the most stringent new policy in history,China's photovoltaic industry ushered in a node. In this year, the price of photovoltaic products ushered in an unprecedented plunge; in this year, countless enterprises were in trouble; in this year, the newly added photovoltaic installations that have been growing for many years have finally ushered in a decline.


The "531" New Deal has completely changed the development model of the photovoltaic industry. The industry seems to have turned from a prosperous to a weak, but in fact it has changed from disorder to order. In the above-mentioned series of changes, the market battle for mono polycrystalline continues, and great changes have occurred in 2018, which will cause great changes in the photovoltaic market in 2019. In the process of price cuts that lasted for a whole year, is polycrystalline better, or is the single crystal laughing to the end?


The price war runs through the whole year. Who wins and who loses?


In fact, the single polycrystalline competition is earlier and more intense than the "531". On the eve of the release of the New Deal, the price war of single poly is the focus of industry people in the first half of 2018. Let time return to the beginning of 2018, the single crystal industry represents Longji shares first, and three consecutive price cuts kicked off the price war. Since then, almost every other month, Longji's monocrystalline silicon wafers have to be reduced once. On June 14th after the release of the "531" New Deal, Longji shares reduced the price of silicon wafers by 14%, creating the biggest decline in half a year. As of October 22, the price of monocrystalline wafers of Longji shares has been reduced by ten times in a year, from 5.4¥/piece at the beginning of the year to 3.05¥/piece. Ten times a year, the price cut was 2.35¥, a drop of 43.5%! Such price cuts may be unique in the history of the development of the photovoltaic industry.


And the price of the benchmark polysilicon film is even more fierce. At the end of February, the price of polycrystalline crystals dropped from 4.7¥ / piece to 3.7 ¥ / piece. After the release of the "531" New Deal, the price of poly silicon cells fell to 2.3¥ / piece, a half-year drop of more than 50%! Since then, it has dropped all the way to 2.17¥ / piece.


The data shows that the price of domestic monocrystalline silicon wafers is currently maintained at 3.05~3.10¥/piece, and the price of polycrystalline silicon wafers is maintained at 2.05~2.20¥/piece. Throughout the year, the drop of monocrystalline silicon wafers reached 43.5%, and the price of polycrystalline silicon wafers fell by more than 50%! Among them, the price reduction of polycrystalline silicon wafers still has a downward trend.


Wafer is only one part of the PV upstream industry chain, but it is also enough to manage the leopard. The tragic price war has spread throughout the industry chain. In the process of price reduction in this year, the polycrystalline industry has shown its full potential, and the single crystal industry is relatively more comfortable.


According to the OFweek Industry Research Institute, in 2017, the market share of the single crystal industry is close to 30%. After this year's industrial transformation, the market share of single crystal continues to climb to around 50% on the basis of 2017! From the perspective of market share, the single crystal industry has achieved a complete victory in the market competition in 2018.


Unlike the polycrystalline industry, the single crystal industry has long established the advantages of a limited number of leading companies. The "oligarch effect" of this industry has made the cost of the single crystal industry fall more smoothly during this year's shuffling process. In contrast, the polycrystalline industry has presented a state of multiple, mixed and uneven. It is precisely because of this that after the decline in domestic demand, many polycrystalline manufacturers have experienced the phenomenon of suspension of production and shutdown. More deadly, in 2018, the polycrystalline industry continues to have new capacity to put into production, which further exacerbates industrial competition.


On the other hand, in the past three phases of the leader project, the share of single crystal products has been far ahead of polycrystalline products, which played a key role in the market share of the single crystal industry. The "531" New Deal has accelerated the trend of high efficiency in the industry. The rapid growth of single-chip PERC cell efficiency has just caught up with this wave of market trends.


Under such circumstances, single crystal products are increasingly favored by the market, and the market share of the polycrystalline industry has reached a new low. Has the future market been determined to be a single crystal world? Has polycrystalline been saved?


At present, the market share of the single crystal industry has approached 50% in 2018, and is expected to continue to increase in 2019. If no special circumstances occur, the market share of the single crystal industry may surpass the polycrystalline industry in 2019.


The rise of single crystals has been a foreshadowing a few years ago, and the earlier discussions between those companies about the single polycrystal have quietly followed. Because the giant companies that were originally dominated by polycrystalline products have already laid out the monocrystalline industry unconsciously.


GCL Group has always been the main pusher of the polycrystalline industry. In 2017, they took the lead in popularizing the diamond wire cutting process in the polycrystalline industry, which drastically reduced the production of polycrystalline industry and promoted polycrystalline black silicon technology has always led the development of the polycrystalline industry. However, at the beginning of 2018, GCL-Poly, the flagship listed company of GCL Group, announced that it would invest 9 billion RMB to add 20 GW of monocrystalline industry.


As one of the world's largest component suppliers, Jinko Energy initially focused on polycrystalline components, but with the rise of the single crystal industry, Jinko launched 72 single-chip PERC cheetah components this year, with a production capacity of 400W. According to Jingke, the sales of the Cheetah series components are in short supply.


The popularity of the single crystal industry has also attracted the competition of many companies. According to incomplete statistics, GCL Ningxia 1GW high-efficiency single crystal, Beijing Yuntong Ningxia 2GW single crystal, Artes Baotou 2GW single crystal, Central Inner Mongolia 15GW (the company's total production capacity is about 23GW), Jinko Energy Xinjiang 4-5GW, Jingao Solar Single crystal projects such as 3-4GW are under construction or mass production.


Under this circumstance, the single crystal market in 2019 will usher in a new scene. In the strong rise of single crystal, polycrystalline is not without chance.


Once upon a time, the polycrystalline industry was in full swing, and most people thought that single crystals were not saved. But after a few years, the single crystal industry has risen strongly, relying on technological innovation and technological upgrading. However, after several years of explosive growth, the market share of the single crystal industry is only close to 50%.


In today's photovoltaic market, efficiency is the vitality, and cost reduction is the king. No one in the future can say that the single crystal seems to be more dominant, and polycrystalline may not be able to perform technical iterations again, thus taking back the cost advantage. Regardless of polycrystalline or single crystal, products that reduce the cost of photovoltaic power generation are the best products.


It is still too early to discuss whether polycrystalline can be rescued. However, under the trend of leading enterprises vying for the layout, the single crystal production capacity is increasing, and the market share of single crystal is increasing, the photovoltaic market pattern in 2019 is inevitably different from previous years. What insights do you have for the PV market in 2019?