Aurex Insights: APAC Renewables Market Review 2019
At A Glance
As we come to the end of the year and a time of rePection, we would like to share our insights into the Renewable Energy market and talent trends from 2019.
Excitingly, this year was one of many firsts: Taiwan’s first commercial offshore wind farm generated its first power, the first large-scale Poating solar project to be installed in Southeast Asia was completed in Vietnam, and the first LiDARs were launched in India and Korea to measure wave and wind conditions in preparation for each country’s first offshore wind farms.
As local and national policy initiatives stimulated the industry with attractive Feed-in-Tariff (FiT) offerings and competitive auctions, developers also benefitted from advances in technology and lower costs.
With this, we saw a steady Pow of developers enter the region from Europe and the Americas, leveraging their experience from more mature markets to capitalise on opportunities in Asia. We also saw established players such as Enel, Orsted, and wpd open new ofices in the region.
We also witnessed a steady trend for companies along the value chain like EPCs and equipment manufacturers pursuing their own project development either as joint ventures, such as Swancor Holding, or independently.
As companies entered new frontiers, they looked to build teams with not only local language skills but a comprehension of regulations at local and national levels. Candidates with the ability to assuage farmers and fishermen as well as the dexterity to integrate into a multinational company proved to be in high demand yet low supply, making it a challenging environment to hire and retain talent. The few candidates with this diverse skillset have been repeatedly approached and command a premium in the market.
To provide a solution for the talent shortages, training and certification organisations were called upon to upskill candidates, mainly from the oil & gas and marine industries, to transition into renewables. Companies looked to importing leadership talent from abroad in the short-term while grooming local talent for succession.
Given the fierce competition for land, increased interest in Poating solar and Poating wind could be seen across multiple geographies, especially Taiwan, Japan, and Korea. While traditionally these technologies would be deployed offshore, developers have opted to use them on inland lakes and rivers especially when paired with aquaculture.
While experts in Poating technology from Europe, like Ciel et Terre, have expanded into Asia to test their technology against the region’s notorious typhoons, we have seen non-traditional players such as Shell embrace Poating offshore with their acquisition of EOLFI, a French offshore wind developer. Separately, Shell also acquired a stake in Cleantech Solar, signalling interest in C&I work across Asia and India.
Generally, the development community seems bullish that 2020 will be a year for continued growth in the Renewable Energy community. We have heard that Mainstream Renewables is looking to raise additional equity for further projects, BlackRock has successfully raised US$1 billion at the first close for its Global Renewable Power III fund with a US$2.5 billion target, and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners has raised US$1 billion for their CI NMF I fund to focus on Asia, Latin America, and Eastern Europe.
Aurex Group is also optimistic, and we look forward to bringing you further insight into the top market trends, movements and opportunities throughout 2020.
Consultant, Power Generation, Asia