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Kyocera Plans 25% Solar Panel Sales Expansion on Incentives

Kyocera Corp. plans to sell 25 percent more solar panels as an incentive program for clean energy boosts demand in Japan, which is projected to become the second-largest market in the world this year.

Kyocera expects to sell more than 1,000 megawatts of panels globally in the 12 months to March 2014, Shoichi Aoki, a director and managing executive officer, said at a news conference today after the Kyoto-based company announced financial results. Kyocera sold 800 megawatts in the year ended March 31.

Japan started offering so-called feed-in tariffs for renewable energy in July following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis, spurring solar panel installations across the country. Bloomberg New Energy Finance projects Japan will become the largest solar market in the world after China this year.

Sales in Kyocera’s applied ceramic products group, which includes solar products, rose 18 percent to 211.4 billion yen ($2.1 billion) for the year ended March 31, according to the company. Profit for the group jumped to 17.9 billion yen from 6.5 billion yen.

“The domestic residential solar market continued to be strong and the feed-in tariff boosted the market,” Aoki said. “We expect solid growth this fiscal year, too.”

Kyocera, which also makes parts for mobile phones, has been developing solar cells since 1975.

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