Japan approves 2014/15 FIT rates

First Solar's recently completed Kitakyushu-shi array in Japan

First Solar recently completed its first utility-scale PV array in Japan.

Japan has signed off on feed-in tariff (FIT) rates for the year between April 2014 and March 2015, offering ¥32 ($0.31) per kWh for large PV, ¥36/kWh for offshore wind and ¥22/kWh for onshore wind.

All the rates are as expected.

The Japanese government also said it will impose a six-month deadline on PV developers between the time they receive their FIT approval and the point at which they have secured the land and equipment, in a bid to deter speculators and speed up the addition of new generation capacity, according to reports.

Japan added nearly 7GW of PV capacity last year, making it the world’s second largest market after China.

Although it is the first time Japan has offered a FIT for offshore wind, some analysts have expressed pessimism that ¥36/kWh is enough to spark significant growth in the market, given the country’s challenging physical conditions and lack of experience in the sector.

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