The average installed cost of grid-connected rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) panels for households in SA fell below US$3/W in 2015, from just under $5/W in 2011. But it is still higher than in Tunisia and Germany.
In Tunisia, government finance is available to households to promote solar PV connected to the grid, an International Renewable Energy Agency report says. Between 2010 and 2015 the cost there fell from about $5.5/W to about $2.1/W, though there is variance, possibly because of a lack of competition.
SA’s demand is driven by the cost competitiveness of solar PV for households compared with Eskom power because there are no major support policies to encourage installation.
Germany’s lower costs are typical of Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development countries, where there are stable regulatory frameworks and established supply chains for solar PV.