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Global and european PV 2016

08 September 2017

During the year 2016 a total of 76.6 GW of PV were installed on the planet.

It is the highest annual figure recorded and represents a 50% increase over the previous year, which added 51.2 GW. The installed PV power in the planet exceeds 300 GW. In just one decade, solar capacity accumulated in the world (6.6 GW in 2006), multiplied by 50 (306.5 GW in 2016).

  2015 2016 Variación 2015 2016 Variación  
GLOBAL 51,2 GW 76,6 GW +50% 229,9 GW 306,5 GW +33%  
ASIA PACÍFICO         147,2 GW   48% Market
EUROPA         104 GW   34% Market
AMÉRICA         45,9 GW   15% Market
MEDIO ORIENTE Y ÁFRICA         4,7 GW   1,5% Market


Evolution of global annual solar pv installed capacity 2000-2016.

Fuente: Solar Power Europe 2017.

The country that dominated the global PV market during 2016 was China. The Asian giant connected 34.5 GW to the global grid, up 128% from 15.1 GW a year ago. It is also ranked first in the world by accumulated power (77.9 GW). "China installed 24.4 GW of solar energy in the first half of 2017, official NEA data" August 7, 2017.

                                                                                                         FTV INSTALADA ANUAL  FTV ACUMULADA TOTAL 2016
  2015 2016 Variación  
1º China 15,1 GW 35,4 GW +128% 1º RANKING GLOBAL 77,9 GW
2º EEUU 7,5 GW 14,8 GW +97% 3º RANKING GLOBAL 42,4 GW (13,8% Market)
3º Japón 10,8 GW 8,6 GW - 2º RANKING GLOBAL 42,9 GW (14% Market)
India 2 GW 4,5 GW +125% 9,5 GW aumento hasta 10 GW en 1er trimestre 2017
Australia  1.022 MW 750 MW -20% 5,8 GW
Chile   821 MW   1.594 MW
México    1 GW OTORGADO    
Honduras       433 MW
Filipinas       1.047 MW

The US ranked second in the ranking for PV's global installed capacity during 2016, a 97% increase over the previous year. They reach the third place in the ranking of accumulated power at the end of 2016, with 42.4 GW.

Japan, despite a decline in installed capacity in 2016 (8.6 GW) compared to the previous year (10.8 GW), was the third largest market of PV worldwide. Its accumulated power level (42.9 GW) allowed it to continue occupying the second place in the world ranking.

The tenth place in this last ranking occupies Spain. 5th place at European level (after Germany, Italy, UK and France).

                                                                                                                                                FTV ACUMULADA EN 2016 NIVEL GLOBAL
China 25,3 % 77,9 GW
Japón 14,0 % 42,9 GW
EEUU 13,8 % 42,4 GW
Alemania  13,4 % 41,1 GW
Italia 6,2 % 18,9 GW
UK 3,8 % 11,5 GW
India  3,1 % 9,5 GW
Francia 2,3 % 7,1 GW
Australia 1,9 % 5,8 GW
10º España 1,8 % 5,5 GW
  Resto del mundo 14,4%  


Fuente: Solar Power Europe 2017.

India has grown by 125% from 2 GW to 4.5 GW in 2016. This means that in 2016, India ranks fourth in this global cumulative power ranking, except for European countries (Germany, Italy and UK).

Australia reduced its installation power by 20% in 2016, where it only installed 750 MW compared to the 1022 MW installed in 2015. With 5.8 GW of cumulative power, it is ranked ninth in the global ranking, ahead of the tenth Spanish position with 5.5 GW.

In the American continent, in addition to the US, other countries walk along the solar trails: Chile, totaling 821 MW in 2016, while Mexico has granted 1 GW through PPP.

By 2016, the countries of the region (Middle East) were all small solar markets, with Jordan adding the largest capacity (291 MW).

South Africa added 509 MW and Egypt installed only 10 MW, after the government cut off its FIT program process announced in 2014, which was expected to reach 2.3 GW of solar capacity by 2017.

Zambia awards the first 100 MW of 600 MW in 2016.

                                                                                                                                                        FTV INSTALADA ANUAL
  2015 2016 VARIACIÓN
CHILE   821 MW  
EGIPTO   10 MW  
ZAMBIA   100 MW  

proyectos en 


  2015 2016 VARIACIÓN  
EUROPA 8,6 GW 6,7 GW -21% 101,5 GW
UK 4,1 GW 1,97 GW -52% 11,5 GW 6º Ranking Global
ALEMANIA 1,45 GW 1,42 GW - 41,1 GW 4º Ranking Global (13,8% Market)
TURQUIA 191 MW 571 MW +200% 820 MW
FRANCIA 895 MW 559 MW -38% 7,1 GW 8º Ranking Global
PAISES BAJOS   500 MW   1.811 MW
ITALIA  300 MW 369 MW +23% 18,9 GW 5º Ranking Global
SUIZA   250 MW   1.681 MW
BÉLGICA 95 MW 170 MW +70% 3.423 MW
AUSTRIA   149 MW   1.077 MW
HUNGRÍA   100 MW    
POLONIA 50 MW 100 MW +100% 182 MW
UCRANIA    50-80 MW    
RUSIA   50-80 MW   94 MW
BIOLORRUSIA   50-80 MW    
ESPAÑA 49 MW 55 MW +1,12% 5,5 GW 10º Ranking Global



Fuente:Solar Power Europe 2017

Fuente: Elaboración propia con datos de Snapshop of Global Pv Markets-lea Pvps. y Global Market Outlook for Solar Power/2017-2021.

The first European solar market remained in 2016 the United Kingdom achieving that title by third consecutive year. However, with only 1.97 GW connected, the new installed capacity decreased 52% from the 4.1 GW that the country added the previous year. The abandonment of the British government's support for solar energy is the main reason for the sharp drop in demand for Europe in 2016 (21%). The UK Solar Trade Association published a study in June 2016 that one out of three solar jobs were lost in the last year.

The second European market was, once again, Germany, providing almost exactly the same capacity as the previous year: 1.42 GW in 2016, compared to 1.45 GW in 2015.

Except for these two countries, no European country approached the 1 GW installation level in 2016.
Turkey, a new number three on the European solar map (for annual installation capacity), increased photovoltaic power by almost 200% from 191 MW in 2015 to 571 MW in 2016.

France resulted in disappointing figures for 2016: it added only 559 MW, down 38% from the previous year's 895 MW.

Only in the European countries, the Dutch installed a volume close to the figures of Turkey for the same period, ie installed around 500 MW in 2016. In 2016, the Netherlands saw their first photovoltaic system built above 10 MW.

PV additions / increases in Italy increased by 23% in 2016, although the absolute amount remained fairly low (369 MW).

Good news is the new photovoltaic capacity of Belgium (170 MW), which means a year-on-year growth of 70%.

In Eastern Europe, Poland doubled its photovoltaic capacities in 2016, totaling around 100 MW.

Non-EU countries, Ukraine, Russia and Belarus went from almost no solar data in 2015 to between 50 and 80 MW each in 2016.


2016 will be remembered as the year when solar power became cheaper than the wind (Solar Power Europe 2017).
Record growth year: 50% more installed capacity than the previous year.
The rapid decrease in solar energy costs continues to improve the competitiveness of this technology, being one of the main factors of its success.
The latest calculations of the cost of electricity (LCOE) of the US investment bank Lazard Capital clearly demonstrate that enterprise-scale solar energy is cheaper today than the new combined cycle gas (CCGT) turbines, coal and power plants nuclear weapons.
Governments are increasingly using public tenders / tenders as planning tools for the development of solar power plants. Japan will move from a power tariff to a large-scale solar energy tender plan this year. PPA prices have been falling rapidly in recent years.

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