1GW of PV seen in Mideast and Africa in 2013

Saudi Arabia has a target of 9.5GW of renewables by 2030

The 3.5MW PV array in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, developed by Phoenix Solar using Suntech modules.

The Middle East and Africa (MEA) will add 1GW of PV capacity in 2013, a more than six-fold increase on the 136MW the sunny region put up last year, predicts market researcher NPD Solarbuzz.

The 2013 growth spurt will be driven by a large slug of capacity coming on line in South Africa under that country’s renewables programme. Some 1.45GW of capacity is slated for commissioning by the end of 2014 as part of the first two tender rounds.

Israel is expected to be the second largest MEA market in 2013, fuelled by quotas, tenders and a newly implemented net-metering scheme.

Between them, South Africa and Israel will account for 80% of the region’s PV demand in 2013, says Solarbuzz.

By 2017, however, Saudi Arabia is expected to become the region’s largest market, on its way to a 16GW PV target for 2032.

All told, the MEA region will likely be adding in the neighbourhood of 3.7GW annually by 2017 – although the actual figure could be significantly higher, predicts Solarbuzz.

At 3.7GW, the region would account for an estimated 6% of global demand, compared to 0.5% last year.

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