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Phoenix Solar Says End-Year German Solar Demand to Match 2010

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Nov. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Germany, the biggest market for solar panels, may add 1.5 gigawatts to 2 gigawatts of the devices in the fourth quarter, matching levels seen in the year-earlier period, according to Phoenix Solar AG.

Demand for panels in Germany “has been picking up considerably in the months of October and November,” Chief Executive Officer Andreas Haenel said today in a phone interview. The German market will shrink in 2012 and then stabilize in 2013, Haenel said.

Germany last month announced plans to cut solar subsidies by 15 percent from Jan. 1, a decision that may spark an installation rush as developers seek to lock in higher tariffs before the new rates apply. Germany added a record 7.4 gigawatts of solar power in 2010, mainly on surging sales in the weeks before two tariff reductions.

Phoenix Solar, which builds and sells photovoltaic plants, today reported a third-quarter net loss of 19 million euros ($26 million) on inventory writedowns, low demand in its home market and tumbling prices for solar panels.

“The downward spiral in module prices will soon come to an end,” Haenel said. “We will have to see further price cuts in 2012 as Germany lowers subsidies but the reductions won’t be anywhere near this year’s level.”

Germany added 1.84 gigawatts of modules in the fourth quarter of 2010.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stefan Nicola in Berlin at snicola2@bloomberg.net

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

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