In April 2022, PVthin submitted its feedback to the European Commission’s call for evidence on the EU Solar Energy Strategy. In the submitted position paper, PVthin welcomes the opportunity to comment on the European Commission’s plans to develop an EU Strategy for Solar Energy.
The upcoming Solar Strategy provides an opportunity for the Commission to take meaningful action to rebuild EU competitiveness in the solar sector, strengthen supply chain resilience and access to PV components, promote high environmental and social sustainability requirements for PV products on the EU market, and leverage demand-side measures to accelerate deployment of these products. The following key challenges are suggested as aspects to be addressed by the Strategy:
- Heavy dependencies impact the availability of key technologies
- Concerns around social and environmental sustainability
- Intellectual property protection
Strengthening PV supply chain resilience requires a significant increase in the production of PV modules and components. This production must be diversified geographically, to avoid situations where issues in one region can impact the deployment of PV installations worldwide. Fair competition among economic regions is necessary to drive capacity expansions and technology innovations. If PV manufacturing further consolidates in one market, competition will suffer and innovations will slow. As a result, PVthin encourages the EU to put forward the following policies as part of the upcoming EU Solar Strategy:
- Create the right conditions to rebuild EU solar manufacturing based on a level playing field internationally.
- Implement demand-side measures to promote the most sustainable solar technologies.
- In line with commitments made at the G7 in Cornwall, restrict market access for PV components made with forced labour.