The Brazilian solar market resumed strong growth in the middle of the second year of the Covid-19 pandemic. According to a recent report by Brazilian consultancy Greener, the country imported 4.88 GW worth of PV modules in the first half of 2021. This compares to just 2.2 GW in the first six months of last year, and surpasses the 4.76 GW of PV module imports registered for the whole of 2020.
The total imports for the first half of 2021 should mobilize investments of R$20 billion (US$3.81 billion) in Brazil, Greener CEO Marcio Takata told pv magazine.
The massive import of PV modules and inverters, however, does not reflect the volume of installed capacity. In the first half of 2021, 1,450 MW of distributed generation PV systems and just 63 MW of large-scale PV plants were installed in the country. For comparison, in 2020, these values stood at 2,644 MW and 793 MW, respectively.
“We started to feel this recovery at the end of last year when there was an acceleration of projects for distributed generation,” Takata continued. “This was one of the factors that triggered the acceleration and pushed companies to rebuild stocks.”
Most of the modules used in the new PV systems in Brazil continue to be imported. The participation of national manufacturers fell in the first half of 2021, representing just 1.8% of the market, compared to 3.8% in H1 2020 and 3% in H1 2019.
Overall, Longi was the largest importer with 825 MW in the first half of 2021. Trina, Canadian Solar, and Risen, meanwhile, all had volumes above 500 MWp. The market is still fragmented, with the top 10 brands corresponding to 82% of the market, among 52 active brands.