Mexico to Triple Demand for Solar Next Year With 250 Megawatts

Demand for solar panels in Mexico will more than triple next year to 250 megawatts and the country will become Latin America’s biggest market by 2016, according to GTM Research.

More than 200 megawatts of the projects will be large-scale facilities and about half of them are planned for the state of Baja California Sur, Adam James, a South Bend, Indiana-based analyst at GTM Research said today in a telephone interview.

Mexico is expected to match Chile as the region’s biggest market in 2015 and then surpass it as more local businesses build solar farms to offset their energy costs, James said. Demand for solar power in Mexico now is driven mostly by a government program that guarantees state-power utility Comision Federal de Electricidad will buy power from solar farms with as much as 30 megawatts of capacity.

Mexico’s solar market will “rise significantly in 2016 and continue to post growth in the 300- to 400-megawatt range out to 2018,” he said. The country will install about 70 megawatts this year.

Peru has 96 megawatts of solar power in operation at the start of this year, the most in Latin America. Mexico and Chile both had about 10 megawatts, James said.

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To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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