Fluctuations Emerge in Wafer Prices as Cell Prices Persist in Decline
2023-09-21 9:55

P-type polysilicon prices have remained stable throughout the week, while N-type polysilicon prices have increased slightly. The mainstream concluded price for mono recharge polysilicon is RMB 83/KG, while mono dense polysilicon is priced at RMB 81/KG and N-type polysilicon is currently priced at RMB 93/KG.

On the supply side, there was an unfortunate incident during the expansion of new capacity, and there was a shutdown and maintenance of production capacity for leading companies in Inner Mongolia. Consequently, the actual output of polysilicon this month has been impacted, exacerbating the already tight supply situation. Some companies are currently negotiating orders for October, but the trading market has been lackluster, increasing pressure on market dynamics. On the demand side, this month’s orders are being delivered, and crystal pulling end’s production schedules remain robust. However, wafer inventories are on the rise, and prices within the midstream industry chain are declining. Consequently, it has become more challenging for manufacturers to pass on the cost of raw materials to other segments. In the short term, there is still a bottleneck in polysilicon supply, and there remains room for polysilicon prices to rise. Furthermore, the demand for high-quality polysilicon remains strong, causing the price gap between N-type and P-type polysilicon to continue widening.

The prices of M10 wafer have remained stable throughout the week, while G12 wafer prices have begun to decline. The mainstream concluded price for M10 wafer is RMB 3.35/Pc, while G12 wafer is priced at RMB 4.20/Pc.
On the supply side, the cumulative stockpile of wafers is becoming increasingly evident, and downstream cell manufacturers are seeing their wafer inventories rise, which is putting added pressure on wafer sales.
On the demand side, cell manufacturers are holding ample wafer inventory, and the declining wafer prices are significantly dampening their purchasing appetite. Currently, polysilicon prices are on the rise, offering some support for maintaining wafer prices. However, the growing accumulation of wafer inventory coupled with sluggish downstream purchasing demand is likely to weaken this support. Consequently, in the short term, we may witness fluctuations in wafer prices, potentially leading to a decline.

Cell prices have continued to decline this week. The mainstream concluded price for M10 cell is RMB 0.70/W, while G12 cell is priced at RMB 0.72/W. The price of M10 mono TOPCon cell is RMB 0.73/W.
On the supply side, during the National Day holiday, some module factories will reduce their production. However, cell manufacturers are still operating at high capacity, resulting in an oversupply issue and excess output. Concerning cell types, the surge in TOPCon cell production capacity during the same period has temporarily strained production capacity. Consequently, the supply of N-type cells has notably surpassed its demand. It is anticipated that cell prices will continue to experience a slight decline, though the rate of decline may not be uniform across all cell types. Following the resumption of production, there will be an uptick in demand for cells, stabilizing P-type cell prices, but there remains a risk of N-type cell prices experiencing a drop.

Module prices have maintained stability throughout the week. The mainstream concluded price for 182mm facial mono PERC module is RMB 1.21/W, 210mm facial mono PERC module is priced at RMB 1.23/W, 182mm bifacial glass PERC module at RMB 1.23/W, and 210mm bifacial glass PERC module at RMB 1.24/W.
On the supply side, recent module bidding prices have once again reached a record low, signaling that module manufacturers are still engaged in a fierce price competition, driving down prices. This cost pressure is subsequently passed on to the middle and upper segments of the industry chain.
On the demand side, European module inventory is currently high, putting short-term pressure on export volumes. Additionally, production schedules for modules in the fourth quarter are contingent on the demand from domestic distributed installations and overseas installations. In the short term, module prices have already dipped below the industry’s average cost, leaving limited room for further price reductions. However, in the long run, if cell prices drop to a level that allows specialized module factories to operate efficiently, the module supply is likely to remain in oversupply. Consequently, module prices may decline once again.

Tags:PV cell