IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2020 - 53

market. The government formulated PV industry development plans, subsidy policies, and construction projects; consequently, China's PV installed capacity became the highest globally, transitioning from a large PV manufacturing
country to a large PV application country. Moreover, the
initiation of a series of programs, such as the PV Forerunner, promoted significant technological progress and lower
installed PV costs. With the issuance of relevant industry
standards and specifications as well as the implementation
of a PV feed-in tariff and PV project construction mandates,
the industry entered another period of rapid development,
expanding significantly faster than planned.
Industry overdevelopment and a subsidy shortfall led
China to enact the 531 New Policy, which took effect on

31 May 2018. The government aimed to reduce subsidies
and limit development, which significantly affected the PV
industry. Moreover, PV power plant construction was suspended during the second half of 2018. At the beginning of
2019, however, the government proposed subsidy-free grid
parity for PV electricity. Figure 3 illustrates China's PV
installed capacity through the years.

Evolution of China's PV Electricity
Price Policy
China's PV subsidies primarily include installation assistance, tax relief, and feed-in tariff mitigation, which varies
by types (centralized versus distributed PV) and regions
(which have different resource types). Since the creation of

table 1. The development of China's PV industry.
Development Period

Related Policy

Macro Situation

Solar PV Capacity

Initial demonstration
(before 2007)

*	 Brightness Program
*	 Delivering Electricity to Every
Village
*	 Golden Sun
*	 PV Building Application
Demonstration

The domestic PV power-generation
projects had little marketization, and
most of them were demonstrations.
The PV manufacturing industry grew
rapidly in foreign markets, improving
technology and making capital
investments. The global financial
crisis occurred, and the industry
suffered setbacks and market turmoil.
Simultaneously, a series of policies
was introduced, and the PV sector
was accepted as an emerging strategic
industry that promoted a new round of
investment.
The United States launched an
antidumping and antibribery
investigation, later joined by Europe,
resulting in a serious setback to the
development of China's PV industry.
The national government increased
its support for PV applications, and
the country's PV companies quickly
adjusted their focus to the domestic
market, thereby realizing distributed PV
applications.
The government introduced intensive
support policies for the PV industry
that were rapidly implemented. The
PV industry entered a period when the
technology developed quickly, domestic
feedstock and equipment became
mainstream, costs fell, and the powergeneration efficiency increased, with
continuous, fast-paced growth in the PV
installed capacity in China and other
primary markets.

No more than
0.5 GW by 2007

Industry establishment
(2007-2010)

Setback resulting
from antidumping
and antibribery
investigation
(2011-2012)

Recovery and rapid
development
(2013-2018)

Transition to PV grid
parity (2018-present)

may/june 2020	

*	 The National Energy
Administration's 12th Five-Year
Plan for Solar Electrical Energy
Generation Development
*	 The State Grid's Opinion on GridConnection Services of Distributed
PV Power Generation
*	 A PV power generation feed-in
tariff policy formulated by the
National Development and Reform
Commission
*	 The National Development and
Reform Commission's Notice
on Promoting the Healthy
Development of the PV Industry by
Using Price Leverage
*	 The National Energy
Administration's Notice on Further
Implementing Policies Related to
Distributed PV Power Generation
*	 PV Poverty Alleviation
*	 PV Forerunner
*	 The State Council's Opinions
on Promoting the Healthy
Development of the PV Industry
*	 Notice on Matters Related to PV
Power Generation in 2018
*	 On Actively Promoting Grid Parity
for Wind Power and PV Power
Generation Without Subsidy

More than 1.5 GW

More than 9 GW

More than 126 GW
(2016: 34 GW;
2017: 53 GW)

The PV industry policy tightened,
2018: 44 GW
subsidies decreased, construction
decelerated, and the sector entered a
slow phase. Trade tariffs became more of
an issue for China, which was accused
worldwide of not respecting intellectual
property rights.

ieee power & energy magazine 	

53



IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - May/June 2020

Contents
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