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Canadian Solar Expands Australian Business With Deal

By Rich Smith - Mar 12, 2020 at 2:44PM

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Australia is Canadian Solar's fifth biggest market -- and getting bigger.

Solar panel module-maker Canadian Solar (CSIQ 3.84%) bases its operations north of the (U.S.) border -- but it's no stranger to doing business "Down Under." Since setting up shop nearly two decades ago, the solar concern has built a presence in more than two dozen countries around the globe, Australia included, providing solar modules for use generating power for residential and commercial customers.

Now it's set to break into the Australian power supply business, wholesale.

Diamond shaped solar farm in a field

Image source: Getty Images.

This morning, Canadian Solar announced its first ever "power purchase agreement" (PPA) in Australia. Operating out of its 146 megawatt peak (MWp)/110 megawatt-alternating current (MWac) "Gunnedah" solar farm in New South Wales, Canadian Solar will supply power to Amazon's Australian operations.

"The agreement with Amazon is Canadian Solar's first PPA in New South Wales," said Canadian Solar in a statement, "and marks its strategic entry into the large Australian Consumer and Industrial ("C&I") PPA market."

It probably won't be the last deal Canadian Solar signs, either. According to company CEO Dr. Shawn Qu, Canadian Solar already has "a pipeline of nearly 1.2 GWp" worth of power projects lined up in Australia, "including 335 MWp of projects ready to build." This suggests that Canadian Solar's Australian PPA business could more than double in size in the near future -- then nearly quadruple after that.

With $232 million in 2018 revenues, Australia is currently Canadian Solar's fifth biggest market after the U.S., Japan, India, and Brazil. Today's announcement puts Australia on track to become a much bigger part of Canadian Solar's future.

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