Malaysia is situated at the equatorial region with an average solar radiation of 400-600 MJ/m2 per month. It has a promising potential to establish large scale solar power installations; however, solar energy is still at the infancy stage due to the high cost of photovoltaic (PV) cells and solar electricity tariff rate. The Malaysian government is keen to develop solar energy as one of the significant sources of energy in the country. According to the 9th Malaysia Plan (9MP), a large allocation had been dedicated for implementation of solar PV systems. On 25th July 2005, a Malaysian Building Integrated Photovoltaic (MBIPV) project had been announced and it was planned to end by 2010. The project consists of three categories which include: BIPV demonstration, national "SURIA1000" and BIPV showcase. Greater emphasis will be placed on energy efficiency under the Tenth Malaysia Plan (2011-2015). This paper discusses present and future situation of solar power in Malaysia, utilization of solar energy and the strategies taken by the Malaysian government and Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) to promote solar energy thermal applications and electricity power generation in the future. ?? 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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