Italian Solar Power Basking Again

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted March 3, 2011

Italy’s solar market has been the strongest market for solar in recent years.

Most of the market’s success can be attributed to Italy’s subsidies for solar panel installations that triggered a solar energy boom in since approval in 2007.

The launch of the incentive program also attracted the world’s biggest PV module makers (solar panel makers) such as China’s Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE: STP), Trina (NYSE: TSL), Yilgli Green Energy (NYSE: YGE) and U.S. firm First Solar (NASDAQ: FSLR).

The rapid growth of Italy’s PV market has kept investors and industry committed to the Italian solar market.

That is why it came as a great shock when the Italian government in late January announced it would be placing a cap on incentives suspending financial assistance to solar capacity after 8,000 megawatts is installed.

The incentive cap plan displeased solar operators and investors alike — fearing such a cap would slow down growth in the PV market.

Luckily, a report this morning pushed investors’ worries away.

Italy will be removing their solar power incentive cap of 8,000 MW until June when new rules will be introduced to the solar power sector.

The report in Reuters cited an anonymous Italian ministerial source stating incentives on solar installations will not be suspended after all.

This news was celebrated in the market for solar stocks. First Solar shares are up 2.8% Sunpower (NASDAQ: SPWRA) is up 3% and JinkoSolar Holding (NYSE: JKS) is up almost 4% along with others.

With Italy’s subsidies back in full swing, expect to see rising solar stock shares well into 2011.

Until next time,


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