Monday, March 19, 2012

BELIZE INTERNAL LISTSERVE DEBATES ON SOLAR PANEL MANUFACTURING LOCALLY




THE INTERNAL DEBATE ABOUT LIGHT MANUFACTURING SOLAR PANELS, OR ANYTHING ELSE IN BELIZE. SMALL LOCAL MARKET AND NO GOVERNMENT BREAKS MAKES IT IMPRACTICAL. YOU POSSIBLY COULD SELL OVER IN GUATEMALA WITH THEIR BIGGER MARKET. A 60 WATT SOLAR PANEL COULD PROBABLY BE MANUFACTURED AND SOLD FOR $1000 BZ, OR $500 USA, SKIPPING THE MIDDLEMAN. COMPETITIVE IMPORTS RUN ABOUT $1800 BZ. OR $900 USA OR MORE.

Debate on solar panel manufacturing from internal Belize local listserves.

LACK OF GOVERNMENT INCENTIVES CRIPPLING PRODUCTIVITY IN BELIZE?

-In all truth, passing a mandate to buy back "green" energy from home owners will change very little the Renewable Energy arena in Belize, and any where in the world for that matter.

Why?

Well first and foremost is the initial investment. Even with the recent price reductions in solar panels a homeowners return on investment (RI) is at about 10yrs.

Sounds ridiculous? Not really! The only reason such investments are in the neighborhood of 4-6yrs in the States and other developed nations is - because of direct government incentives -. In the US for instance, depending on the state, you get 15-20% state tax break on your install, about the same from the Feds, and some miscellaneous on your end of year fillings. So in truth you, the owner, is only forking out about .50C to the Dollar for your system. Not happening any time soon here.

Here in Belize, you have to pay the extra shipment/handling for all materials, nothing, absolutely nothing is manufactured here. There are some low ID tariffs on solar panels, but what good are panels for without wire, breakers, charge, controllers, inverters, etc,, all of which carry a 15-20% ID, plus environmental tax, broker fees, etc.. Let's not even go into batteries because I assume you're talking about grid-tied systems; but for the record they carry a nice 35% ID, plus all of the previously mentioned and more,,,,, oh, did I mention add 12.5% on top of all that for you know what......

Don't mean to play devils advocate on this one, you all know I love my industry, just giving out hard facts.


With Regards,

Marco Valle
Chief Electrical Engineer

Pro Solar Engineering, LTD.
Belmopan City, Belize, C.A.
Tel: 011 (501) 832 - 2217 or 610 - 0017
www.prosolarltd.com

Green Energy for A Green Planet

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