Moving into foreign markets

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Exports of German wind turbines picked up in 1996, although much of the improvement was on paper only -- a result of the takeover of Danish Nordex by the Balcke-Dürr concern. A total of 260 turbines, or 82.5 MW, were sold abroad last year, an increase of 129.4% in rated capacity and 94% more in turbine numbers on the 1995 tally. Of total wind turbine sales, exports accounted for 24.39%, more than double the figure of 11.1% in 1995.

"These figures highlight the growing significance of exports for German turbine manufacturers," says Knud Rehfeldt of the German Wind Energy Institute DEWI, which compiled the figures. Exported turbines are markedly smaller than those installed in Germany, with an average size of 317 kW compared with 531 kW.

Enercon led the export field last year, accounting for 28% of the total capacity. It was followed by Nordex Balcke-Dürr with 27%, Tacke Windtechnik with 11.1% and AN Maschinenbau with 10%. The remaining nearly 24% was accounted for by Husumer-Schiffswerft, Südwind, Vestas, Micon Deutschland, Jacobs Energie and Hanseatische AG. Exports went to 16 countries, the most important being India followed closely by China.

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