Investment in clean energy rose sharply across Asia in the past year, increasing by 33 percent to US$82.8 billion in 2010. In 2009, clean-tech investment in the Asian region surpassed that in the Americas for the first time.
In 2005, China attracted less than US$3 billion in private investment for clean energy. Four short years later, in 2009, it led the world with US$39.1 billion in private investment. Last year, private investment grew a further 39 percent to US$54.4 billion – well-above the region’s growth rate. Private investment in clean energy in China in 2010 equals that of the entire world in 2005.
That same year, China manufactured 50 percent of the world’s solar modules and wind turbines. India, too, has continued its ascent as a destination for clean energy investment, according to research released by Pew. India attracted roughly US$4 billion in private investment, ranking 10th in the world for total investment as well as for five-year growth rates for renewable energy production.
Rapid growth and fierce competition have marked the global clean energy sector, in which worldwide clean energy investment and finance has grown 630 percent since 2004. Nations like India, China and Germany, which saw an increase in investments, were attractive to financiers because they have national policies that create long-term certainty for investors.
Global clean energy finance and investment expanded in 2010 to US$243 billion, which is a 30 percent increase from the previous year. With China leading the pack, Germany ranked a close second, doubling its level of investment to US$41.2 billion. The United States came in third place and saw a 51 percent growth in clean energy investment from private sources to US$34 billion over the past year.
Looking at global trends, the solar sector experienced the strongest growth among the various technologies, led by small-scale residential projects. Declining prices and generous government support in key countries helped the solar sector achieve 40 percent of total clean energy investment in 2010. India specifically is pursuing a series of aggressive policies which have, to date, contributed to healthy growth. We anticipate further expansion, particularly as international players seek opportunities in new markets.
Private investment in India and China seemed to specialize in different, but complementary, industries. India aims to deploy 20 gigawatts of solar energy by 2020, while China aims to develop a wind energy capacity of 150 gigawatts within the same time frame. The differences in size of their 2020 goals are of course reflective of their respective economic capacity, with China’s economy roughly three times the size of India’s.