Will The U.S. Solar Industry Survive Import Tariffs? Trump Holds The Cards

Forbes

10/3/17

When it comes to protecting U.S. businesses from what he perceives to be unfair trade practices, President Trump has said that he would not hesitate to impose tariffs on goods that are imported here. He will soon have such a decision to make with respect to Chinese-made solar panels crossing our borders.

The investigation into cheap imports comes at the behest of two bankrupt solar panel makers: SolarWorld Americas and Suniva, which is Georgia-based company that is owned, interestingly, by a Chinese conglomerate called Shunfeng International. The two are now asking for a minimum import price of 74 cents per watt for solar modules, nearly doubling the current import prices.

However, such a tactic would also mean that U.S. produced solar panels would get taxed as they seek foreign markets. As a result, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) that represent solar makers here has come out against it, saying it would “cripple” one of the “brightest spots” on the energy horizon and damage a $29 billion segment of the economy.

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