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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Turbine makers take breather

By Liu Yiyu  (China Daily)

14:01, April 05, 2012

Technicians check the power grid at a wind farm in Chuzhou, Anhui province. In 2011, China's newly installed wind power capacity reached 18 gigawatts, or about 40 percent of the global total. (Provided to China Daily)

Grid connections and quality issues undermine wind-power efficiency

China's wind power industry is slowing down as foreign participants retreat from the world's largest market.

Suzlon Energy Ltd is believed to have axed 75 percent of the staff at its Tianjin plant. The India-based wind turbine manufacturer had more than 600 workers at the plant in 2011.

The company said it only secured 64 megawatts of orders in the first nine months of 2012, compared with 201 mW a year earlier.

A company spokesman declined to confirm the job cuts.

Suzlon's profits fell in the fourth quarter, partly due to grid infrastructure delays in China, the company said.

Meanwhile, Vestas Wind System A/S, the world's largest wind turbine maker, announced plans to cut staff this year, including 400 people in China.

Repower, a subsidiary of Suzlon Energy, announced last year it would withdraw from the China market, having sold only 200 mW of wind turbines during the previous five years in China.

"A lot of the weak suppliers will die, pushed out by quality demands from the government. In the end, this market will have maybe 10 mature Chinese players and a few foreign firms," said Wolfgang Jussen, Repower's CEO in China.

Sinovel Wind Group Co, China's largest wind turbine maker, has estimated its 2011 profit fell 50 percent, while Goldwind Science & Technology Co, the third-largest, estimated that profit fell 50 percent or even vanished.

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