GCL Poly’s reference to rebounding polysilicon prices is outdated

polysilicon chunks
After a short recovery in July and August, the polysilicon spot price is heading towards values below $10/kg – Image: Activ Solar

In a review of the 2018 interim report issued by leading China-based polysilicon producer GCL-Poly Energy Holdings on September 19, pv magazine quoted the company as saying that “silicon and wafer prices have already rebounded from rock bottom prices.”

This paraphrase, however, is not quite accurate. In fact, GCL-Poly’s interim report says: “In July (…) the prices of silicon and silicon wafer bottomed out and rebounded.”

That’s a subtle, but important difference. Indeed, polysilicon prices on the Chinese spot market, in particular those of feedstock used for multicrystalline wafers, slightly recovered in July and stabilized in August. But they have been on the downtrend again since mid-September.

Moreover, the average international polysilicon spot price tracked by PVinsights already undercut US$11/kg a week ago. As GCL, Tongwei and Daqo will ramp up new Chinese low-cost, high-quality polysilicon plants with a total capacity of 82,000 metric tons (MT) in an oversupplied market in October, it is very likely that we will soon see a spot price average that is below $10/kg.

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