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16 June 2010

China to dominate wind power

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China is quickly developing into the world's biggest wind power market

The Asian giant in 2009 installed more wind turbines than all of Europe and by 2017 could have the world's largest total capacity, said Angelika Pullen, spokeswoman for the Global Wind Energy Council, an industry group.

China in 2009 installed 13 gigawatts of new wind power capacity, compared to 10 GW in Europe and 9.9 GW in the United States, figures from the GWEC indicate.

"From 2005 on, China each year doubled its wind power capacity," Pullen said Tuesday at a news conference in Berlin. "Can they continue this trend? Well, every year we say 'likely not,' and then they double their capacity again."

At Husum Wind Energy, one of the world's biggest wind trade fairs, Asian turbine companies will play a prominent role.

"The Asian wind companies will present their own products at Husum," said Hanno Fecke, the managing director of the fair, which in 2010 will feature 800 exhibitors from 30 countries. While European and U.S. companies still dominate the turbine sector, the Chinese industry has grown strongly.

"There are 30 turbine producers and 40 suppliers in China," Pullen said, adding that the country had also boosted its infrastructure. Due to lacking grid connections, it used to take up to half a year or longer until wind farms would actually go online. "Today, it takes only 1 to 2 months," Pullen said.

Meanwhile, growth within Europe is expected to remain strong.

Wind will account for half of the European Union's power mix in 2030 said Gerd Krieger, the deputy chief executive officer of the German Engineering Federation, or VDMA.


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