UK Solar panel giant and specialist glass maker Romag plans to lift production capacity by 300 percent by the end of this year.

The Durham-based company is investing £1 million in state-of-the-art Japanese technology to speed up the production process to improve the quality of products by automating certain elements of the process.

With plans to go tech-savvy Romag Managing Director Phil Murray told the Solar Power Portal: “We are now ahead of the game.”

Romag is so far the only UK-owned and UK-based manufacturing company in the sector.

The company plans to capitalise on the government’s 10 percent premium on tariff for the European Union, eyeing the solar market in Italy as well as the UK.

Last year solar PV installations in the UK were estimated to shoot up to 96MW, up an astounding 1,500 percent from 6MW in 2009, according to iSuppli Corp.

“It takes a lot of knowhow to design a roofing system,” Murray said explaining why there aren’t many UK companies into solar manufacturing. 

Romag and Sharp are the only two manufacturers of solar PV in the country.

“There is a dearth of technical skills related to solar PV in the UK,” he continued.

On a positive note there are many small businesses into insulation venturing into the market which is “encouraging” according to Murray.

Romag is hoping to get involved in a renewable energy project worth of £170 million to be executed by the Birmingham council. The project will put in place new boilers and glazing among others measures of going green.

However with the tender procedure still at early stages the company is not certain if it will get a chance to spearhead the project. 

Romag’s solar photovoltaic products come under the collective name of PowerGlaz and include an extensive range of products all of which meet the requirements for the UK feed-in tariffs (FiT).