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Toward a Sunny Future? Global Integration in the Solar PV Industry

This paper analyzes the global integration of the
solar photovoltaic (PV) sector and looks in detail at the industry’s recent growth patterns, industry cost structure, trade and investment
patterns, government support policies and employment generation potential.

Key Findings

Executive Summary

Policymakers seem to face a trade-off when designing national trade and investment policies related to clean energy sectors. They have pledged to address climate change and accelerate the large-scale deployment of renewable energy technologies, which would benefit from increased global integration, but they are also tempted to nurture and protect domestic clean technology markets to create green jobs at home and ensure domestic political support for more ambitious climate policies. This paper analyzes the global integration of the solar photovoltaic (PV) sector and looks in detail at the industry’s recent growth patterns, industry cost structure, trade and investment patterns, government support policies and employment generation potential.

About the Authors

Jacob Funk Kirkegaard is a research fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. Thilo Hanemann is research director at the Rhodium Group. Lutz Weischer is a research analyst with the World Resources Institute’s Climate and Energy Program. Matt Miller is a consultant in the solar industry with manufacturing and development experience.

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