New Horizons for the Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Market of Romania
/18th May 2020, RENEWABLE MARKET WATCHTM/ Romania had the cumulative installed capacity of 1,390 MW (1.39 GW) as of 1st January 2020, according to the recently published report Romania Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Market Outlook: 2020 ÷ 2030. The photovoltaic development in Romania was started with small scale photovoltaic installations below 30 KW in 2006. In opposite to the rapid expansion of the wind market in Romania, the photovoltaic power capacity remained relatively unchanged by the end of 2011. After that Romania was an emerging market for photovoltaic energy investments amongst SEE countries by the end of 2014. The maturing photovoltaic markets in Germany, Spain, France, Czech Republic, Greece, Italy and Bulgaria allowed investors to look for new opportunities among South East European (SEE) nations and Romania was one of the best alternatives. Furthermore, Romania was one of the major destinations for the Chinese solar power plant investors in Central and Eastern Europe between 2012 and 2015.
Recent and Pending Legal and Regulatory Changes Supporting Solar PV Market Development in Romania
Law 184/2018 – passed on 23 July 2018 – approved the Government Emergency Ordinance No. 24/2017 (GEO 24/2017) amending and supplementing Law No. 220 / 2008 on the establishment of the promotion of the renewable energy production system. One of its most important content is the definition of “prosumer”. Suppliers have to take over the surplus of electricity from the prosumer, defined as a final client (a legal or natural person) who both consumes and generates electricity and which is responsible for the net metering. For the electricity sold by prosumers with capacity up to 27 KW, no VAT or other taxes are due and no additional building permits shall be required for rooftop solar photovoltaic systems. Owners of renewable energy installations with up to 100 kW capacity may sell their surplus power to the national distribution system operators (DSOs) at a rate established by the Romanian Energy Regulatory Authority (ANRE).
The Ministry of Energy of Romania has considered the introduction of a support scheme to support investments in new generation electricity capacities with low carbon emissions. A public debate on a document presenting this new support mechanism in the form of a scheme based on paid capacity tenders on the type of Contracts for Difference (CfD) has recently concluded.
Romania’s energy law currently provides that all the produced energy is sold exclusively on the trading platform in a transparent and competitive way, and does not offer the possibility for producers to conclude freely negotiated bilateral contracts. However, a recent draft law amending the Energy Law No. 123/2012 introduces a provision that allows investors in energy projects to trade the energy expected to be produced by the new capacities before they are authorized by ANRE and put into operation. Assuming that the above-mentioned legislative proposal will be approved, these long-term PPA contracts could be concluded on a special platform established for this purpose, as it results from OPCOM’s statements.
Cumulative Installed Capacity of Photovoltaic (Solar PV) Power Plants in Romania
Chart 1: Cumulative Installed Capacity of Photovoltaic (Solar PV) Power Plants in Romania (in MW) 2010 ÷ 2019; Source: Renewable Market Watch™
By the end of 2011, the country had approximately 3 MW installed capacity, by the end 2012 this capacity increased fourteenfold to approximately 42 MW, and with a more than thirty-fold explosive growth cumulative installed capacity reached 1,293 MW (1.29 GW) by the end of 2014. However, solar photovoltaic market growth in Romania between 2015 and 2019 was moderate with only 97 MW newly installed capacity in this period.
Romania Solar Resource Potential
Romania has very good solar resource potential as the geographical location is favorable for the utilization of solar energy. Romania is located in an area with a solar potential of 210 sunny days per year and with an annual solar energy flux between 1,000 kWh/m²/year and 1,300 kWh/m²/year. From this total amount around 600 to 800 kWh/m²/year is technically feasible.
Chart 2: Solar Resource Map of Romania; Sources: Wolrd Bank Group, ESMAP, SolarGis
According to the study of the Faculty of Energy Engineering at the University of Oradea in the South of Romania, the yearly solar radiation is 1450 ÷ 1750 kWh / m², being the best value for solar installations. The values greater than 1450 kWh/m² are in Oltenia, Muntenia, and South of Moldova. The most important solar regions of Romania are the Black Sea coast, Dobrogea, and Oltenia with an average of 1,600 kWh/m²/year.
Share of Solar PV in Romanian Power Generation Capacity
The industry is the key consumer of electricity for the country (metallurgy, chemical industry, energy and machine construction), followed by households and the transportation industry. The Romanian economy is overall energy-intensive compared to the economies of the neighborhood countries. Interconnections with EU countries have improved, stabilizing the power system.
Chart 3: Romania Power Generation Capacity Breakdown (in %) by Source (Fuel) Type in 2019; Sources: Transelectrica, National Statistics Office of Romania, Renewable Market Watch™
The total installed power generating capacity in Romania is 20,696GW at the end of 2019, reported the Renewable Market Watch™ based on data of Transelectrica. Some 31.4 % of that capacity is hydro (6,703MW), 6.8 % is nuclear (1,413MW), 15.7 % is natural gas (3,240MW) and coal accounts for 23.1% (4,787MW). Wind accounts for 14.6 % (3,023MW), solar photovoltaic accounts for 6.7 % (1,390MW), other renewables (biomass, biogas, geothermal, etc.) account for less than 1%.
Recent Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Market Activity in Romania
In our report Romania Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Market Outlook: 2020 ÷ 2030, we have included information about the recent solar projects in Romania that are and would play a key role in expanding the solar power market in the country. You may read on the next rows more about two of these projects.
Dedeman, a company founded by the brothers Dragoș and Adrian Pavăl, announced in April 2020 that it is installing photovoltaic power plants on the roofs of 28 stores in the network, the value of the investment exceeding EUR 4M. The electricity produced through them will be intended exclusively for self-consumption, and the period of use will be at least 25 years, according to Forbes. The total installed power in the 28 locations will be over 7MWp and will provide approximately 30% of the annual electricity consumption needed to carry out the activity of the stores.
OMV Petrom, the largest energy company in Southeastern Europe announced this week that installed solar photovoltaic panels over the rooftop structures of 33 OMV branded fuel filling stations and 7 Petrom-branded fuel filling stations, so that they can be supplied with renewable energy and reduce the consumption of conventional energy. By installing solar photovoltaic panels, more than 10% of the electricity needs of the fuel filling stations shall be supplied from solar energy. The investment in this project amounts to EUR 1.3M. Owing to the energy produced by the solar photovoltaic panels, each filling station will contribute to the reduction of the carbon footprint by 8.3 tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year.
The Romanian solar energy market is expected to be heading toward the expansion phase by 2030. Factors propelling the market growth include concerns regarding the environmental impacts of fossil fuels such as degradation, greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), severe climate change conditions, and others. In addition, rapid urbanization, and economic growth in the largest Romanian cities are significant factors driving the solar energy market. The power market (including the solar photovoltaic sector) in Romania shall be impacted by the COVID-19 post-financial crisis, but we remain optimistic about the future development of solar energy in the country by 2030.
The more information about the solar power market in Romania including full contact details of solar project owners and developers you may read here: Romania Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Market Outlook 2020÷2030
In order to download the executive summary brochure with sample pages, please access from here: Romania Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Power Market Outlook 2020÷2030 - Sample
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