GE (NYSE: GE) CEO Jeff Immelt announced this week the company’s Infrastructure division had taken a hit, with lower wind turbine sales to blame.

Infrastructure orders for Q4 of 2012 were $28.5bn, “up 2 per cent and up 7 per cent excluding the effects of a decrease in orders for wind turbines, and FX (foreign exchange)”.
Jeff Immelt
Mr Immelt welcomed the US production tax credit (PTC) extension announced by President Obama, as the company seeks to improve its wind turbine business.

It suffered at the tail end of last year as orders wilted in the face of uncertainty over the future of that key federal incentive.

“It opens up a two-year window”, said Immelt, referring to the fact that projects need to start construction, rather than complete work, during the calendar year.

“We hear more positive comments coming out of the renewable energy sector.”

Immelt said the PTC extension should boost the aggregate of GE’s wind orders over the next two years, but added that it was too early to say exactly how that would play out on a quarter-by-quarter basis.

According to Recharge News, the GE boss added that the group’s wind turbine business would remain “lumpy” in 2013.

Immelt said: “We ended the year with a strong quarter despite the mixed global economic environment. The outlook for developed markets remains uncertain, but we are seeing growth in China and the resource-rich countries.”

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