Analysis of feed-in tariff policies for solar photovoltaic in China 2011–2016

Liang-Cheng Ye, João F.D. Rodrigues, Hai Xiang Lin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)
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In 2011 China initiated policies to promote the adoption of solar photovoltaic (PV) using feed-in tariff (FIT) policies. Since then the PV domestic market expanded substantially. In the past six years, the FIT policies were updated (adjustment of tariff levels, division of three FIT regions, setting of installation quotas) to address emerging problems such as PV waste, explosive installation, unbalanced spatial distribution. This paper aims to investigate the historical development and implementation of FIT policies in China from 2011 to 2016. The tools of net present value (NPV)/internal rate of return (IRR), learning curve and the system dynamics are employed to show the degree of economic incentives of FIT policies, to understand the learning rate of centralized PV systems, and to study the dynamic mechanism of the FIT system. We conclude that in the near term the tariff levels should be adjusted more frequently to keep IRR values in the range of 8–12%, and a tight quota combined with the deployment of ultra-high voltage (UHV) lines should be continued for the provinces with severe PV waste.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)496-505
Number of pages10
JournalApplied Energy
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017


  • Feed-in tariff (FIT)
  • Internal rate of return (IRR)
  • Learning curve
  • Net present value (NPV)
  • Solar photovoltaic (PV)
  • System dynamics

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