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Global Smart Grid spending grows 7 pc in 2012

Em News Bureau ,  Thursday, February 21, 2013, 14:13 Hrs  [IST]

Smart Grid USUtilities world over have together spent $13.9 billion on Smart Grid technologies in 2012, up 7 per cent from 2011, says Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Further, Bloomberg expects just over 10 per cent compound annual growth for the next five years, nearly doubling the market to $25.2 billion per annum by 2018.

Roughly half of 2012’s spend (or $7.1billion) was spent on smart metering and related infrastructure and services. The next biggest category was distribution automation, followed by integrated demonstration projects in areas such as demand response, home energy management and smart electric vehicle charging.

The largest regional market for Smart Grid technologies and services remains the US, where utilities spent $4.3 billion in 2012, down from $5.1 billion in 2011. However, China is closing the gap, last year raising its investment from $2.8 billion to $3.2 billion, largely on the back of major smart metering procurement by the national State Grid company. China is expected to overtake the US as the largest smart grid market in 2013, as stimulus funded projects in the US conclude and Chinese investment continues to grow. Asia as a whole grew its investment to $5.6 billion in 2012, with new digital energy initiatives getting underway in Japan, India, Korea and various Southeast Asian nations.

Smart grid spending in Europe was a relatively modest — $1.4 billion, up from $1.1 billion in 2011, as progress on the European smart metering directive remains mixed at the member state level. However, investments are expected to pick up rapidly after 2014 as a number of countries such as the UK and France begin major deployments, and investments in smarter distribution networks also accelerate.

Latin America remains a nascent market for Smart Grid technology, though regulatory progress has been made in Brazil in the last year.
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