German module manufacturer continues to increase productionAstronergy is among the few international manufacturers of solar modules to receive an import licence from the Turkish Ministry of Economics. The German company is permitted to supply a total of 100 megawatts (MW) of capacity to Turkish photovoltaic projects. As a result, additional production lines are starting up at the plant in Frankfurt (Oder).
Restrictive market with high barriers to entry for foreign module manufactures
For a long time foreign manufacturers had easy access to the Turkish market for solar modules. However, since last year, the Turkish government has preferred to support domestic manufacturers with contracts and provide tax incentives for ramping up production capacities domestically. As a result, the Turkish Ministry of Economics has strictly limited the import of PV modules from abroad. Import licenses are highly sought after by foreign suppliers, as experts expect Turkey to add up to 3 gigawatts of PV capacity over the next two years through major projects alone.
Very high demand for German quality modules
Astronergy already has supply contracts to deliver the first 50 MW of modules to Turkey in the form of the ASM6610P module. In securing these contracts, the company has benefitted from its long-standing contacts with the EPC Solmotion and its Turkish subsidiaries. In addition, the demand for premium-quality German modules is very high in Turkey.
“The local investors are specifically asking for high-quality modules, and they are prepared to pay more for them. Quality is worth it, because losses in yield are far less common than they are with PV projects that use poor quality modules”, reports Thomas Volz, the CEO of German-based Astronergy. “Our highly automated production also ensures that our module quality is not only very high, but also consistent. That’s why, for example, we have an extremely low complaint rate of only 0.005 percent – word of this has clearly spread throughout the market.”
At the plant in Frankfurt (Oder), the modules are checked for microcracks and cell fracture quickly, at high resolution and fully automatically using an electroluminescence-based process, which is the only one of its kind in the world. Other strict internal and external testing ensures that the quality of Astronergy’s modules is well above certification standards.
International banks support projects with tier 1 components
International banks primarily support PV projects which use components from tier 1 manufacturers. Bloomberg lists Astronergy as a tier 1 supplier. This means that the company has a proven track record of reliability in terms of module quality, supply and financial stability.