Solar panel manufacturer GCL-SI has plans in the works to build a 60 gigawatt (GW) solar panel factory – making it the largest in the world. It will be based in Hefei, capital of east China’s Anhui Province.
The company will invest 18 billion yuan into this new solar project, which will run from 2020 to 2023. During this time, the factory will be built in four phases, each with a production capacity of 15GW.
GCL’s ambitious goal is to double the 30 gigawatts of capacity installed in China in 2019 with the factory alone – meaning it would be able to supply almost 51% of solar installations worldwide.
According to BloombergNEF, the project will boost GCL’s ability to produce panels with a total capacity of 64.8GW. To compare, the world’s biggest solar panel manufacturer, JinkoSolar Holding Co., currently has just 16GW of capacity.
So, can they do it?
The coronavirus is set to make a huge impact on the global economy. GCL, however, maintains its optimistic outlook on the solar PV market. The International Energy Agency (IEA) shares this positive outlook for renewables, forecasting that the global cumulative installed capacity of PV will reach 1,721GW by 2030, and 4,670GW by 2050.
On the flip side, shares inGCL System fell as much as 6.3% on 30 March – though their global assets, worth nearly 3.3 billion USD, can support them during this time.
Overall, China has experienced a huge drop in production rates in the first quarter of 2020. The coronavirus pandemic has left the country with a 13.5% decrease in production in both January and February – the first drop in industrial output for China since at least 1990.
Despite this uncertain time, GCL remains hopeful, and is pressing forward with its record-breaking solar factory.