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[Interview] First Solar Tapping Japanese Market With CdTe Panels (page 3)

2014/04/29 03:42
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute
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Q: First Solar announced that it will engage in the construction of solar power plants in Japan and invest about ¥10 billion in it. How do you consider the Japanese market?

Brutsaert: We consider that, among power sources, solar energy will play an important role. After the Great East Japan Earthquake, the amount of electricity generated by nuclear power plants decreased, and it has been made up for by thermal power plants. As Japan's dependence on imported fossil fuel has been at a very high level, power sources that do not depend on fossil fuel are becoming more important from the viewpoint of national security.

We expect that some of the nuclear power plants in Japan will restart power generation. And the importance of thermal power plants will not change. However, solar power generation, which is not affected by procurement status or cost of fuel, will stabilize energy price in the future.

We are investing in countries where there is a long-term demand for solar power generation, and Japan is one of them. We will develop mega solar plants as well as unique applications and technologies suited for the Japanese market.

We are also paying attention to solar projects that have received certification of FIT facilities from Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry but have not started construction yet. We want to materialize those projects by using our vertically-integrated business model and financial power.