German auctions to support the construction of photovoltaic power plants experienced a sharp increase in interest last year. Last year’s final round, which took place in December, attracted almost a fifth more performance than the previous record auction in July. Thanks to the further strengthening of the competition, it was possible to reduce the competitive prices by an average of one-fifth compared to the July round. This year, there should again be three rounds of auctions for terrestrial photovoltaics, but they will offer a larger volume compared to last year.
A total of three rounds of auctions to support the construction of land-based photovoltaic power plants took place in Germany last year, the last of which took place at the beginning of December. While the first round last year saw relatively lukewarm interest, subsequent rounds attracted a record volume of offers.
The higher interest of investors in the second half of the year could be attributed to the experience from the beginning of last summer, when electricity prices on the spot markets completely collapsed due to strong production from photovoltaic and wind power plants. By participating in the auction, they can secure a guaranteed minimum selling price for their projects.
Already in the second round last year, the volume of registered projects exceeded the total volume of the auction almost threefold. In the last round from December, however, the volume of registered projects increased by another 800 MW, i.e. by approximately one fifth. According to the local regulator, projects with a total installed capacity of 5,845 MW were entered into the December auction, in which developers competed for 1,611 MW of power, breaking the auction’s previous record.
“The last round of auctions is also a record: Never before has the participation in auctions for terrestrial systems been so high. With a submitted volume of bids worth 5.48 GW, the volume of the auction with 1.61 GW was exceeded by almost three and a half times. Competition led to lower bid prices,” said Klaus Müller, president of Germany’s network regulator Bundesnetzagentur.
According to the regulator, 124 projects with a total installed capacity of 1613 MW were finally successful in the auction. The competitive prices ranged from 44.4 to 54.7 EUR/MWh, their weighted average was then 51.7 EUR/MWh. Compared to the previous round from last July, this is an almost 20% decrease.
From a regional perspective, the most successful projects have traditionally been in Bavaria (604 MW), followed by Brandenburg (197 MW) and Saxony-Anhalt (167 MW).