In most of this region's countries, photovoltaic energy in 80's and 90's was limited only to very small rooftop on-grid and off-grid installations. Due to the high photovoltaic technology equipment costs, these installations by late 90's have been with a capacity between 1 KWp and 30 KWp. However, this situation started to change in 2010 for 2 main reasons. The first reason is that governments in some of the CIS states introduced many measures to support alternative energy producers to meet targets for higher renewables usage. National Renewable Energy Action Plans (NREAP's) have been developed for some of the CIS states setting mandatory capacity targets (similar to Directive 2009/28/EC for EU member countries) for renewable energy usage as a share of final energy consumption by 2020 to 2030. The second reason is falling photovoltaic (solar PV) module and inverter prices since 2009, which led turn-key installation cost for PV systems from 4.3 EUR/Wp in 2008 to approximately 1.5 EUR/Wp in 2013. Consequences of the continued financial crisis in the EU zone are pressing policy-makers to cut costs, which could negatively affect the photovoltaic sector, dependent on government incentives and stable regulatory framework and laws. This pressure EU zone combined with maturing photovoltaic markets in Germany, Spain, France, Italy and subsidy cuts Eastern European countries may redirect investors to explore opportunities in CIS states according to CIS Countries Photovoltaic (Solar PV) Market Outlook 2013 - 2018
The issues of renewable energy regulatory framework and feed-in tariffs adequacy, of grid access to the local distribution or transmission network, has generally obstructed the development of photovoltaic (solar PV) sector development in many countries in Europe and rest of the world. Authorization processes must not only be streamlined, but they must enable plans to be successfully realized, bolstered by flexibility and an infrastructure that allows new wind plants to be connected to the grid. Thus, governments of CIS countries have to plan coordinated actions to avoid the above-mentioned markets' mistake and build one strong and reliable photovoltaic (solar PV) energy market in the CIS region.
The only well developed PV market in CIS region by February 2014 was Ukraine. However situation in Ukraine dramatically changed. The Ukrainian revolution of February 2014 took place after a series of violent events in the capital of Kiev, which finally have resulted with the forced resignation of the then-President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, who escaped and found political protection in Russia. This was immediately followed by a series of changes in quick succession in Ukraine's sociopolitical system, including the installation of a new interim government, the restoration of an older version of the constitution, and the call to immediate presidential elections, which were held on 25 May 2014 and won by Petro Poroshenko.
After that political turmoil in Ukraine was further resulted in the annexation of Crimea by Russia with support of Russian military forces in March and April 2014. This was a heavy strike for the Ukrainian photovoltaic industry because approximately 50 % of all installed solar capacity in Ukraine is located in Crimea. All local and foreign investors immediately stopped their activities at Ukrainian PV market in such an uncertain environment. On 2 April 2014 Energorynok has officially stopped purchasing electricity from photovoltaic power plants located in Crimea because they have been treated as part of the Russian territory.
Nevertheless of political uncertainty at the moment, our forecast for photovoltaic (solar PV) power sector in CIS countries remains positive. Market growth will be underpinned mostly by investors, which origin from CIS countries, but also foreign investors from Austria, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland, China and South Korea will play a role in the photovoltaic market in this region. The solar PV market in Ukraine will be stalling in 2014 and 2015. Besides Ukraine, next wave markets with short and medium-term potential for development in 2014/2015 are Russia and Kazakhstan. More information about these promising markets you may read here: CIS Countries Photovoltaic (Solar PV) Market Outlook 2013 - 2018