(EnergyAsia, February 18 2013, Monday) — The solar photovoltaic (PV) power sector is set to expand sharply across the world on growing demand for energy and rapidly improving technology provided at lower prices, said UK research and consulting firm GlobalData.

In its latest report, the company predicts global installation of solar PV capacity to rise from 97 gigawatts (GW) in 2012 to 330 GW by 2020 for a compound annual growth rate (cagr) of 16.5%.

A major supporter of solar PV, Germany accounted for around 32% of the global solar PV installed capacity last year. The country has proved its commitment to the renewable energy source through various policies and programs in recent years and maintained its position at the forefront of the market’s development and technological progress.

As a result, Germany’s solar PV installed capacity has leapt from a meagre 2.7 GW in 2006 to 30.1 GW in 2012. With continuing support though feed-in-tariffs (FITs) and other schemes, GlobalData predicts Germany will raise its solar PV capacity to 48 GW by the end of the decade.

China, the world’s largest manufacturer of solar PV modules and exporter, is expected to significantly increase solar module installation at home. By 2020, its domestic installed capacity is expected to surged to 76GW, up almost 10 times from 7.6GW in 2012.