Investors have sought out Chinese markets to capitalize on this global engine of growth, and now solar companies are expanding into China’s photovoltaic market. In the meantime, exchange traded fund investors can play the expansion through solar-related funds.

First Solar (NasdaqGS: FSLR) will supply 2 megawatts of its thin-film solar panels for use in western China and SunPower Corp. (NasdaqGS: SPWR) will invest $15 million to build and install concentrating solar-power systems in Inner Mongolia and other regions in China, reports Christopher Martin for Bloomberg. [First Solar Earnings Lift ETFs]

Sanjay Shrestha, an analyst at Lazard Capital Markets, expects the deals to boost sales in China, which is projected to become the largest solar market in 2013.

“China has the potential to be a major market for solar and this gets them a foot in the door,” Shrestha said in the article. “You don’t want to ignore the Chinese market but it’s difficult to say whether there will be any profit opportunity.”

China will install at least 3,980 megawatts of solar panels in 2013, pushing the country past Germany and Italy, the top two markets this year.