cens logo

Surging Orders Prompt Taiwan's PV Makers to Add Work Shifts during Lunar New Year Break

Jan 30, 2016 | By Ken Liu

Suring orders prompt Taiwan's PV makers to add work shifts during Chinese New Year break. Suring orders prompt Taiwan's PV makers to add work shifts during Chinese New Year break.

Taiwan's photovoltaic-equipment makers, including suppliers of crystalline silicon wafer, solar cells and modules operating upstream, midstream and downstream the industry, have announced extra work shifts during the upcoming Chinese New Year break, to start Feb. 6 and generally end Feb. 14, to deal with robust orders.

The employers will pay two to four times their employees' normal wages for working the extra shifts during the holiday. 

Contrasting the soft spots that have hit some sectors of the information technology and communication industry and the electronics makers on the island in recent months, confirmed by the recent reports of Apple's modestly slowing growth in the last quarter of 2015 and somewhat disappointing sales of iPhone 6 of late that are impacting future orders placed with the likes of Hong Hai of Taiwan (widely reported as the primary assembler of iPhones), local PV makers are receiving orders that are inundating their production lines. They say their industry's book-to-bill (B/B) ratio is above 1, meaning that over US$100 worth of orders were received for every US$100 of products billed last month.

Based on such flooding orders, they feel their production lines will stay at full capacity throughout the normally lukewarm first quarter this year.

To deliver the orders on time, the Taiwanese manufacturers have decided to add work shifts during the Chinese New Year holidays. The makers include silicon wafer suppliers Green Energy Technology Co., Ltd., Sino-American Silicon Products Inc., Gigastorage Corp., and Giga Solar Materials Corp. as well as cell and module makers Motech Industries Inc., Gintech Energy Corp., Solartech Energy Corp., and TSEC Corp.

They also say strong demand has driven up prices of the products to set the stage for encouraging performance of the sector in 2016. The solar power sector is often at the mercy of governmental policy that can quickly shift according to economic growth, politicking by special interest to reallocate or terminate incentives as subsidies. 

Thanks to plentiful orders, Motech, Gintech, Solartech and Tainergy Tech Co., Ltd. have swung to profit from loss since the third quarter of 2015.

The Taiwanese manufacturers expect their earnings for the final quarter of 2015 and the first quarter of this year to rise relative to those of the same period a year ago, with gross margin ratios to also grow at estimated double-digit range.

Unexpectedly robust orders have also prompted the local makers to recruit more workers, with the incidental benefit to Taiwan's job market of absorbing many laid-off workers from other industries.

When the PV market was bearish early last year, most of the island's solar-product makers gave time off to most of their employees during the Chinese New Year holidays to minimize cost.

However there are two sides to every coin of news. Brimming demand can only be smoothly met when raw material supply is continuous, which, unfortunately, is not the case currently. Taiwanese manufacturers are fretting over the alarmingly tight supply of the two major materials for production: silicon wafer and silver powder.

Silicon-wafer suppliers estimate the price quoted to peak in the current quarter after surging above the profitable US$0.9 apiece, to likely motivate cell and module makers to hike prices.

Dowa Hightech of Japan is recognized as the biggest supplier of silver power to solar-equipment makers, commanding half of the world market for the power. In early January this year, the company temporarily shut down its factory due to an accident, which killed two workers and injured two others. The suspension has triggered worries among Taiwan's PV manufacturers, who fear they may not have enough powder to fill the surging orders. Many of them have turned to DuPont and Heraeus Holding GmbH for alternate supply.

Some industry executives predict that Dowa could resume supply by February, but some feel the supply chain will not be repaired until this March.


Industry Reports

Evolution of Self-Driving Cars Disrupts Industry Ecosystem</h2>

Evolution of Self-Driving Cars Disrupts Industry Ecosystem

May 30, 2019

With the advent of the fourth industrial revolution, many countries are actively investing in the smart production of self-driving vehicles, including Germany’s Audi efforts to convert car driving into a mobile, entertainment driving experience; Japan’s Toyota launching the e-Palette, an unmanned electric concept minibus and South Korea’s Hyundai Motor introducing the concept of autonomous drivin...


China Steel Corporation Plans to Change Pricing Next Year to Give Taiwanese Firms Leg-Up</h2>

China Steel Corporation Plans to Change Pricing Next Year to Give Taiwanese Firms Leg-Up

May 28, 2019

China Steel Corporation (CSC) plans to significantly reform their pricing policy, according to CSC Chairman Wong Chao-tung on May 22. Wong said the new policy is a response to capricious global economic and political trends, saying that CSC prices should be timelier and allow enough flexibility to quickly meet market changes. Set to come into effect next year, CSC plans to announce steel p...

CHINA STEEL MACHINERY CORPORATION


Microsoft teams up with Taiwan compaines, bursting into IoT</h2>

Microsoft teams up with Taiwan compaines, bursting into IoT

May 27, 2019

Taiwan's Microsoft announced that it launched the latest Azure IoT PnP on May 21st. In the first wave of 17 cooperative business, Taiwan's companies comprised 7 seats. Microsoft is actively transforming, setting up Microsoft Azure, assisting Taiwanese companies transforming together, and seizing the business opportunity in the global lot. Microsoft held DevDays Asia 2019 on May 21st, announci...



Industry In-Focus

Medical Plastics Connect at CHINAPLAS 2019</h2>

Medical Plastics Connect at CHINAPLAS 2019

May 06, 2019

Benefiting from economic growth, population expansion and an intensifying aging phenomenon, coupled with everyone's increasing concern about health issues, the global demand for medical devices is increasing sharply. In North America, it is expected the spending on healthcare will register a growth of 5.9% from 2017 to 2025. In Europe, rising demand for both dental and physical body implants is e...


For the first time, Taiwan is ranked among the top 10 global aerospace industry players. (photo courtesy of UDN)

Taiwan Makes it into Top 10 of Global Aerospace Players

Apr 23, 2019

After Taiwan’s aerospace industry made it past the billon-New Taiwan dollar mark in 2016 at NTD$100.27 billion, the industry reached new heights the year after by hitting NTD$108.499 billion in 2017. The Ministry of Economic Affairs Industrial Development Bureau expects to see the aerospace industry perform exceptionally well in 2018, reporting production value past NTD$120 billion. Aerospace ...


TAITRA Promotes the Taipei AMPA 6-in-1 Show at the International Auto Aftermarket Expo in Tokyo</h2>

TAITRA Promotes the Taipei AMPA 6-in-1 Show at the International Auto Aftermarket Expo in Tokyo

Apr 11, 2019

The 17th International Auto Aftermarket Expo (IAAE) was held at Tokyo Big Sight from March 13th to 15th. A total of 296 exhibitors occupied 549 booths. According to the organizers, the number of exhibitors that attended this year grew by 7.2% compared with last year. The exhibition was more popular and attracted 34,129 visitors during the three-day exhibition. To promote Taipei International Auto...



Supplier News

China Steel Corporation Plans to Change Pricing Next Year to Give Taiwanese Firms Leg-Up</h2>

China Steel Corporation Plans to Change Pricing Next Year to Give Taiwanese Firms Leg-Up

May 28, 2019

China Steel Corporation (CSC) plans to significantly reform their pricing policy, according to CSC Chairman Wong Chao-tung on May 22. Wong said the new policy is a response to capricious global economic and political trends, saying that CSC prices should be timelier and allow enough flexibility to quickly meet market changes. Set to come into effect next year, CSC plans to announce steel p...

CHINA STEEL MACHINERY CORPORATION


Microsoft teams up with Taiwan compaines, bursting into IoT</h2>

Microsoft teams up with Taiwan compaines, bursting into IoT

May 27, 2019

Taiwan's Microsoft announced that it launched the latest Azure IoT PnP on May 21st. In the first wave of 17 cooperative business, Taiwan's companies comprised 7 seats. Microsoft is actively transforming, setting up Microsoft Azure, assisting Taiwanese companies transforming together, and seizing the business opportunity in the global lot. Microsoft held DevDays Asia 2019 on May 21st, announci...


Economics Ministry Teams up with China Steel Corporation to Bolster Fasteners Industry</h2>

Economics Ministry Teams up with China Steel Corporation to Bolster Fasteners Industry

May 23, 2019

In a bid to help buoy domestic firms in light of the trade tensions between China and the U.S., the government has state-owned firm China Steel Corporation (CSC) to pull more resources in helping Taiwan’s fasteners industry. CSC Chairman Wong Chao-tung said on May 7 that CSC’s third quarter prices will play a pivotal role in bolstering industry competitiveness. Ministry of Economic Affairs...

CHINA STEEL MACHINERY CORPORATION



Insiders' Views

Hong Kong Lighting Fair(Spring Eidition) Exhibitor TUYA showcases the latest application of Bluetooth mesh.

Latest Bluetooth Tech Updates Geared for Smart Lighting, Cities and Wireless Devices

May 07, 2019

Founded in 1998, Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) is a non-profit trade association that oversees Bluetooth® technology. As it supports more than 34,000 member companies, the Bluetooth SIG promotes collaboration among its members to create new and enhanced specifications, extend technology, drive global interoperability through world-class product certification programs, and develop brands ...


2019 Hong Kong Lighting Fair(Spring Eidition)smart lighting prospects look good IoT and artificial intelligence into focus,attracts approximately 21,000 buyers.

HK Int'l Spring Lighting Fair Takes Smart, Eco-Friendly Trends to New Heights

May 07, 2019

The 11th Hong Kong International Spring Lighting Fair, hosted by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, was held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre from April 6 to 9. This year's Spring Light Show attracted more than 1,430 exhibitors from 9 countries and regions to provide a convenient procurement platform for exhibitors and buyers, attracting approximately 21,000 buyers from ...


Megvii Technology Founder and CEO Tang Wenbin

Part 1 Megvii Technology Founder Interview: Face++ AI Facial Recognition sets eye on Asia, starting with Taiwan

Sep 07, 2018

Using facial recognition to remove security checks and recognizing criminals sounds like technological applications out of a movie, though much of it is already implemented in everyday life. Having been founded for only seven years, Megvii Technology Limited, or more commonly known for its facial recognition and AI application Face++, owns critical technology by combining both, and now, recently ...

FOXCONN TECHNOLOGY



Exhibition Highlights

Taipei AMPA showcases electric and smart-enabled electric buses. (Photo courtesy of TAITRA)

Taipei AMPA Post-Show Report

May 13, 2019

The 2019 Taipei AMPA 6-in-1 show congregated at Nangang Exhibition Center Hall 1 and 2. The shows wrapped up on April 28, having attracted roughly around 7,000 domestic and foreign buyers to the event to search and procure. This year’s show theme is an extension of the continual tech trends in the industry – “Motorization, Electrization and Intelligentization,” and the promotion of more matured n...


E-ONE MOLI ENERGY offers ultra-high power, high capacity, long lifecycle and low operating temp.. (photo provided by E-ONE MOLI ENERGY)

MOLICEL®, the renowned lithium-ion battery brand announced grand launch of new high power battery.

May 07, 2019

E-One Moli Energy Corp. is a global leading lithium-ion battery developer and manufacturer with recognized brand name “MOLICEL®”. MOLICEL® has been leading the battery market for more than 30 years, with R&D center in Canada and Taiwan and manufacturing plant in Taiwan. E-One Moli offers competitive advantages to customers in terms of design engineering, applications testing and turnkey battery s...

E-ONE MOLI ENERGY CORP.


Stextun's r&d Clean Tools (photo provided by Stextun)

R&D is always the core corporate function of Stextun and also the best edge to work with our customer.

May 07, 2019

At the beginning, Stextun Industrial Co., Ltd. produced telescopic shower curtain rod and exported to Japan mainly. Due to good quantity, punctual delivery and reasonable price, Stextun earned remarkable customer’s satisfaction. Such kind of order has been repeated until now. Considering the business growth, Stextun started to expand our product line to cleaning tools in 1995 since Stextun p...

STEXTUN INDUSTRIAL CO., LTD.