By the end of 2021, China was the largest offshore wind market in the world after commissioning more than 14 GW during the fourth quarter – a capacity higher than it had commissioned in the entire previous decade.
China becomes the largest market for offshore wind farms
At a total capacity of 26.4 GW by the end of 2021, China became the operator of more offshore wind farms than the rest of the world combined. For reference, the UK currently has 10.4 GW of offshore wind operating.
This significant feat was primarily a result of the decision from the Chinese government to stop national subsidies after 31 Dec 2021. The deadline led to an unprecedented construction rush as developers raced to connect projects in time to benefit.
The effects could clearly be seen in the Chinese heavy-lift vessel market. As utilization rose above 50% – another unprecedented figure – it continued to increase until peaking at 73% in the third quarter of 2021.
Regional regulations and support in place from 2022
With the national subsidies ending in 2021, independent provincial regulations and support schemes are now in place to continue wind industry growth in the country.
Read more: Regional Chinese governments taking on ambitious offshore wind development targets