*Due to the Chinese Qingming Festival (April 5), spot price will be posted on April 6, and weekly price summary on April 7.
Mono-grade polysilicon prices stay on a downward trend at the month’s end, dropping faster to come in at RMB 200-208/kg. Price negotiations continue, with the low-price range approaching its lower limit. Overall, prices are unlikely to sustain above RMB 200/kg in April.
Demand for shipments and inventory pressure make it increasingly difficult for Tier-2 and Tier-3 polysilicon manufacturers to ship, forcing them to offer lower price quotes, widening the price gap between them and their Tier-1 peers. Polysilicon inventory on the stock market can hardly see marked decreases within the first quarter, increasing slightly from the previous quarter instead. The sales environment of the polysilicon sector is undergoing fundamental changes and is full of uncertainties.
Mono-Si wafer price trend stabilize for the time being. To date, leading manufacturers’ prices for wafers of mainstream format show little difference with that of small manufacturers. The previously divided pricing strategies among leading manufacturers have come to a similar arrangement for now. Mainstream prices for 210mm wafer with a thickness of 150μm remain unchanged. With current price level, 210mm-150μm wafers see its cost-performance ratio per watt improves. Future price trend requires further observation.
In the cell sector, manufacturers adjust utilization rates amid tightening wafer supply. In April, cell manufacturers face a dilemma, as the module sector has limited acceptance for cell price increases, while wafer prices show no sign of marked decline this month.
Cell prices are little changed as wafer prices show no sign of changing. Meanwhile, G12 cell demand and prices rise, given growing demand for high-wattage modules and a shortage of M10 high-efficiency cells. While the premium of G12 against M10 increases, several cell manufacturers switch some of their production lines for G12 production, hopefully easing the supply tightness in late April.
This week, trading prices forM10 cells drop slightly to RMB 1.07-1.08/W, while that of G12 sustains at around RMB 1.1/W. Prices in dollar terms remain to sit at RMB 0.03-0.04/W higher.
Future price trend differs for M10 and G12 cells:
For M10 cells, cell manufacturers continue the attempt to raise price quotes. However, given the module sector’s limited acceptance, price hikes are not likely to sustain.
For G12 cell, cell manufacturers also tried to raise price quotes. The latest price quotes come in at RMB 1.12-1.14/W. Trading prices may advance further due to the tight supply. Actual prices hinge on the attitude of module manufacturers and end user demand.
N-type cell prices stay elevated, sitting at RMB 1.2-1.22/W for M10 TOPCon cells. For G12 HJT cells, most orders come from markets outside of China, with trading prices sitting at RMB 1.3-1.4/W. N-type cell supply will increase further as more and more manufacturers prepare TOPCon production capacity for external sales.
Recent tenders see prices dipping further as polysilicon prices gradually lose ground. Competition intensifies in the module sector. As a result, spot prices drop this week, coming in at RMB 1.65-1.8/W for glass-backsheet modules rated beyond 500 W, and t RMB 1.68-1.71/W for glass-glass ones. The low-price range sits at RMB 1.65-1.68/W, whilst the high-price range slip as deliveries at RMB 1.8/W draw to their ends.
In addition to end users’ apparent effort to keep prices in check, the midstream supply chain is also affected by the short-term supply and demand mismatch. Therefore, module prices are unlikely to sustain in April, despite raw material prices slip. Cost pressure escaltes for small and mid-scale and non-integrated makers, who slowly transmit the pressure to upstream sectors. As a result, the growth of cell prices may be relatively limited.
In overseas markets, module prices stabilize at USD 0.2-0.225/W (FOB). In Europe, prices sustain at USD 0.21-0.225/W as demand shows signs of recovering in March. In the U.S., prices rebound mildly for modules imported from Southeast Asia in the second quarter. Overall, prices will sustain at USD 0.4-0.45/W (DDP) throughout the year. As for U.S.-made modules, prices for the second quarter decline marginally to USD 0.55-0.6/W (DDP) due to fluctuations in demand for rooftop projects. In Australia, the Middle East and Africa, and Brazil, prices come in at USD 0.21-0.25/WUSD 0.21-0.22/W, and USD 0.195-0.226/W, respectively., In India, prices for locally made modules stabilize at USD 0.29-0.33/W.
N-type module prices consistent. Module makers will still be under greater cost pressure, given wafer and cell shortages. The price difference can hardly narrow as expected.
For G12 HJT modules, prices come in at RMB 1.9-.95/W, while holding at USD 0.26/W in non-China markets. In China, some module makers adjust the premium of HJT modules against PERC modules.
M10 TOPCon modules see prices sustain at around RMB 1.7-1.83/W, and USD 0.23-0.235/W in overseas markets this week.