France risks losing 2 GW of solar capacity due to retroactive FIT cuts – PV Magazine International


The retroactive FIT cut proposed by the Ministry of Ecological Transition has now reached the French parliament. Around 300 companies in the photovoltaic sector have called on MPs to reject a measure that could destroy investor confidence for years.

From pv magazine France

The French parliament on Saturday began discussion on France’s next finance law, including an amendment that, if approved, would introduce retroactive FIT cuts granted to PV projects between 2006 and 2010 with capacities greater than 250 kW.

“If approved by parliamentarians, this measure would mean the immediate termination of contracts for the majority of the 800 photovoltaic plants concerned ”, Xavier Daval, CEO of French solar technical consultancy KilowattSol, said magazine pv. “This decision would force them to file for bankruptcy, because these factories were built with non-recourse financing.”

According to Daval, the banks and lenders behind these projects will be the ones to suffer the most because the rest of the borrowed money will never be repaid. “But the most disastrous consequence is that these plants, which will no longer have an operator and no longer have a purchase contract, will stop producing electricity,” he explained. “And France will thus see its deployed solar capacity drop by nearly 2 GW. At a time when Europe is calling for a Green Deal, we must again speak of a French exception.

At the same time, a group of 300 companies in the renewable energy sector, including the SER and Enerplan associations but also the large French and foreign solar players in France – with the exception of the large energy companies – declared that the government is proposing a measure that will bring limited financial gains to the state budget, which the government had previously quantified between 300 and 400 million euros, but at the same time it will jeopardize all independent solar electricity operators. “The implementation of this measure would mean months of major economic uncertainty for small and medium-sized businesses and large companies engaged in the fight against the Covid-19 crisis and working on the development of new renewable energy projects”, the group of companies said in a joint statement. ” The energy transition will not take place without a stable framework conducive to investment, ”he also declared.

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