It would be churlish of us to dismiss the turbulent conditions that the industry is facing, but the fact remains that the industry in Europe will survive. Quite how, in what form, and how soon it will return to the boom days of recent years remains to be seen. And let's not forget, when it comes to the state of the industry, everyone's got an opinion...
"At the moment, the production of silicon solar cells involves complicated equipment, vacuum processes and clean rooms which makes the cost of PV cells very expensive. By working together with academic and industrial partners across Europe, we are confident that we will be able to find a way of fabricating cost-effective, high efficiency solar cells, which will benefit businesses and households across the world"
Professor Kwang-Leong Choy, who is leading a Nottingham University (UK) research group that has received a €10 million EU grant
"Europe should think about adding a fourth goal to the three 20-20-20 energy-related ones up to the year 2020. (Europe) ... should make (another) permanent goal a 20 per cent industrial contribution to gross domestic product (by 2020). We need a strategy for the re-industrialisation of Europe"
Energy Commissioner, Guenther Oettinger
"The talks covered Germany, which has some of the world's most ambitious goals in the field... In the broader context, visions of an electricity super solar-based grid include the ‘Desertec' concept foreshadow a word-wide ‘Supergrid of the Future' encompassing all continents"
Ali Aissoui, Senior Consultant at the Saudi-based Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation, discusses the MENA-EU solar energy super-grid
"The results of 2012 - and indeed the outlook for the next several years - show that under the right policy conditions PV can continue its progress towards competitiveness in key electricity markets and become a mainstream energy source"
EPIA President, Dr Winfried Hoffman
"Such a rapid growth rate cannot be expected to last forever, however, and the industry is now weathering a period of uncertainty in the short term"