Mexico has become a rapid growing market in renewable energy after the influential Energy Reform was passed last year. The reform promises increase in private investment and the gradual transformation of the power industry from the current monopolized status to a more competitive economy. The seminar on May 29 invited important industry players to speak on the energy reform and future outlook on the solar industry in Mexico. The speakers included market analyst Ms. Joanna Chen of the Industrial Technology Research Center (ITRI), Dr. Alvaro Lentz of the National Association of Solar Energy (ANES), Ing. Raul Maya of the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) and Dr. Sam Lee formerly of BajaSun Energy.
Santa Rosalia plant, 1 MW, active Apr. 2012
Ms. Chen first introduced the overall economic performance and recent green energy market and policy development of Mexico. Dr. Lentz gave a careful account of reform details and other solar power system incentives, and suggested that high power consumption families are attractive targets for small home systems due to the electricity tariff structure which charges extremely high rates for certain residents. Ing. Maya presented current solar projects of the CFE in the northwestern parts of the country, where solar irradiation is highest. Finally, Dr. Lee shared with the audience his previous experiences in solar project planning and execution in Mexico and analyzed the barriers to be crossed.
Cerro Prieto plant, 5 MW, active Dec. 2012
It could be concluded that though Mexico is extremely new to large solar power projects, the natural and political environments are very good promoters for the industry. Coupling local market development and Taiwanese technology in solar industry, it is recommended that Taiwanese investors search for a local business partner in entering the Mexican renewable energy market. Mexico may not currently have a mature industry structure, it is in the early development stages that market entrants could benefit most.
Aura Solar I plant, 30 MW, active Sep. 2013
The seminar is held in preparation for the Intersolar North America 2014 delegation in July, held jointly by ITRI and SEMI Taiwan. The delegation will include corporate visits and business meetings of solar power related corporations in Mexico, followed by exhibition activities of Intersolar North America 2014 in San Francisco.