PV may hit $83/MWh in Brazil auction

Large-scale PV could hit R$200 ($83) per MWh at the wholesale level in Brazil's upcoming solar-only auction, says Altino Ventura, planning secretary at the Mines and Energy Ministry.

"This is the price that panel makers and the solar industry representatives have been indicating", Ventura says.

Ventura confirms that Brazil will hold a reserve auction for solar power in the second half of 2014, but says the price cap still needs to be determined by the government.

Local power developers and government have signaled the PV auction price may be capped around R$250/MWh.

Ventura also reaffirmed that the government wants to implement policies to support local production of solar panels.

"We cannot be importers, we need to have the technology," he said, but didn't give details.

According to Ventura, Brazil plans to continue policies to guarantee the smallest price possible for all power technologies through competitive auctions. He said that this is better than the subsidies applied by Germany through feed-in-tariffs.

As solar power technology prices fall, it would be able to compete with other technologies in auctions.

Brazil recently suggested that it will tender out 3.5GW of PV capacity (and 9GW of wind) during the 2014-2018 period, representing a breakthrough for solar in Latin America's largest economy.