Tariff Impact On US Solar Market

SunPower Corporation has announced it is buying SolarWorld Americas. SunPower is a global energy company, headquartered in San Jose, California. The company delivers solar solutions to residential, commercial, and power plant customers. SolarWorld is headquartered in Bonn Germany and manufactures and markets photovoltaic (PV) products worldwide.
SolarWorld Americas, the US subsidiary of Solar World filed a trade action with the United States Commerce Department against solar manufacturing companies in the People’s Republic of China (PRC). SolarWorld Americas and six other American companies requested tariffs on imported solar panels.
SolarWorld America’s trade action was opposed by the Solar Energy Industry Association, a major American solar trade association. SunPower also opposed the proposed trade action, filed by SolarWorld America. Opponents to the trade action were concerned that tariffs on inexpensive solar PV would slow the growth of solar power in the United States. Supporters of the trade action were faced with bankruptcy from inexpensive solar PV that were subsidized by the PRC government.
SunPower purchased SolarWorld Americas primarily for the solar PV manufacturing plant in Hillsboro, Oregon. SunPower continues to oppose the recent tariffs instituted by President, because the company manufacturers solar PV in Asia and Mexico. SunPower is seeking an exemption from the tariff from the US Commerce Department.
Tariffs on solar PV imports has also resulted in JinkoSolar Holding Company announcing plans to open a manufacturing plant for solar equipment in Florida. JinkoSolar is the largest solar manufacturing company in the world and is headquartered in Shangrao, PRC.
What impact will the US tariffs have on the manufacturing of solar equipment in the US? Will the tariffs really slow down the rapid growth of solar power in the United States? In my opinion, it is difficult to predict the final impact, although the results to date have been surprising.

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