Photovoltaic Panels: Australia Wants to Distance Itself from China

China alone currently produces 90% of all PV panels in the world

Anthony Albanese

Following a visit to Australia by Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, during which both sides declared their “desire to develop political, economic, and trade ties between the two countries,” Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced the allocation of one billion (!) Australian dollars (US$650 million) to develop a national PV panel production facility.

Through a program oddly named “Solar Sunshot,” Australia wants to reap the economic and financial benefits of a global transition to renewable energy, but above all, it wants to reduce its dependence on China. Australia is currently the world’s number one country for solar electricity generation per capita, reaching over 34 gigawatts in March 2024. Nevertheless, Albanese emphasized, less than 1% of the PV panels currently installed in Australia were manufactured in the country, while the vast majority were imported from China.

“Now about 90% of the PV panels in the world are produced in only one country, China, which also dominates international trade,” said Albanese, according to whom “Australia has lost the industrial production opportunity, but this will now change, and this is the purpose of the maxi-financial support decided by the Australian government.”