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Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell
18 October 2006
BP Solar Australia, the largest manufacturer of solar panels in the southern hemisphere, is using its solar technology, engineering and design expertise to help China meet its rapidly expanding energy needs.
The Australian business has joined China’s Xinjiang SunOasis solar photovoltaic company to form BP SunOasis, a joint venture that is manufacturing, marketing and selling solar photovoltaic (PV) products and systems in China.
Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, today officially opened the new BP SunOasis office in the Chinese city of Xi’an and celebrated the manufacture of the 50,000th solar module since the joint venture began operating in January this year.
“China is investing heavily in solar power solutions, with plans for its domestic solar PV market to grow from 20 megawatts in 2005 to 10,000 megawatts in 2020,” Senator Campbell said.
“This is an enormous expansion that, in Australian terms, will provide power to 2 million homes.
“Given Australia’s world-class solar expertise, the joint venture is a ‘perfect fit’ that will help China meet its growing energy needs, reduce global greenhouse emissions and generate profits for both Australian and Chinese businesses.”
Senator Campbell is currently leading the largest ever renewable energy business mission to China, to open up opportunities for Australia’s renewable energy industries and further explore cooperative action on climate change.
“The BP SunOasis venture is a great example of how Australia can export its renewable energy technologies and expertise to world markets, and is the type of opportunity the renewable energy business mission to China is helping to create.”
Under the BP Solar brand, the Xi’an manufacturing facility will also export solar PV modules to markets in Asia and Europe. Senator Campbell said climate change was a challenge that demanded an effective international response, and the development and deployment of low emissions technologies was a vital part of the global effort.
“Australia and China’s strong cooperation on climate change is providing a real avenue through which this can be achieved,” he said.
For more information, to check the Minister’s latest media schedule in China, or to download the latest photos, transcripts or voice recordings, visit www.greenhouse.gov.au/international/china.
Rob Broadfield (02) 6277 7640 or 0409 493 902 (Australia);
Jahda Swanborough 0448 838 557 (China).