Chinese solar module and cell manufacturer Zhongli Talesun has announced construction of its new manufacturing facility in Thai-China Industrial Park in Rayong, Thailand.
The new facility will be fully automated with an annual production capacity of 500 MW and it is expected to be operational by October this year. The company will make use of advanced processing techniques to produce high-efficiency solar cells and modules in the new factory.
In addition to building a new factory, Zhongli Talesun intends to construct photovoltaic (PV) solar power plants with a total capacity of more than 1 GW across Thailand over the next 3 years. The company would invest US$2.4 billion for the development of these solar PV power plants.
Zhongli Talesun is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Zhongli Sci-Tech Group which manufactures special cables, optical fibres, and solar PV products. The company currently has an annual production capacity of around 2 GW and procures the majority of its equipment from Italy, Germany, and Japan.
The Thai government and various financial institutions have welcomed the project and agreed to offer their support to it.
Thailand is one of the fastest growing solar energy markets in South East Asia. Several big private players are looking to set up solar power projects in different provinces of Thailand.
The electricity consumption in the country is rising at a rate of 4% to 5% per annum, and only renewable energy can bridge the demand-supply gap and reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports. As s result, the Thai government has implemented numerous initiatives to promote solar power infrastructure. In 2013, the government announced long-term feed-in tariffs for rooftop as well as large-scale solar PV projects.
According to a forecast, power production capacity in Thailand is expected to rise to 55 GW by 2030 with its share of renewables to increase to 25% by 2021. Biomass is expected dominate the renewable energy market whereas solar photovoltaic and wind energy are expected to be the second and third largest contributors respectively.