California solar panel manufacturer files petition to extend 201 tariffs on imported solar cells and modules

Auxin Solar, a US solar panel assembly plant, today filed a petition with the US International Trade Commission (ITC) to extend the exemption for crystalline silicon photovoltaic (CSPV) cells and modules. Indemnity tariffs were introduced in 2018 after U.S. manufacturers Suniva and SolarWorld filed a Section 201 petition with the ITC, claiming that imported solar cells and panels were entering the country so cheaply that they could hit the U.S. solar energy production market. were destroying. Auxin Solar was later added to support the tariffs. Auxin makes its own solar panels at its factory in San Jose, California, but largely acts as an OEM. All the solar cells it uses are imported.

The Auxin Solar facility in San Jose, California.

“Renewing this security is essential for America to regain its leadership position in solar energy production and development, and it is a critical step in achieving the broader goal of US renewable energy independence,” said Mamun. Rashid, co-founder and chief executive officer at Auxin. solar. “This is about national security and realizing the promise of green energy independence. We believe that the Commission should recommend extending the safeguard for another four years to strengthen the domestic solar sector. Auxin Solar is committed to strengthening the solar energy supply chain and has filed this petition in the hopes that policymakers will commit to the promise of green energy independence and the high paying manufacturing jobs that will result.”

The indemnity tariffs were set on a four-year drop-down schedule, starting in 2018, with full expiration expected in February 2022. Imported bifacial solar panels were excluded from the import tariffs for a short time, but today are taxed the same as traditional solar panels. All types of imported crystalline silicon solar panels (with the exception of some minor exemptions) have been subject to an 18% tax since February 2021.

To see World’s Solar Energy archived rate coverage here.

Auxin Solar is joined by the defunct Suniva in today’s renewal petition. The ITC is now being asked to determine whether the safeguard measure remains necessary to prevent or remedy serious injury and whether there is any indication that the industry is making a positive adjustment to import competition. The ITC will report its determination to President Joe Biden by December 8, 2021, at which point the president can choose to extend the safeguard for another four years.

Auxin says that the extension of the safeguard measure is necessary because neither Auxin Solar nor Suniva have been able to complete their plans to adapt positively to import competition.

“Auxin Solar and Suniva’s investment plans were negatively impacted by stockpiling prior to the imposition of the safeguard, economic headwinds caused by COVID-19, China’s predatory pricing, and a solution loophole that caused excluded modules in high volumes and at low prices. sharp prices. These combined challenges prevented the release from having the desired effect in enabling companies like Auxin Solar and Suniva to recover from the severe damage caused by imports,” Auxin said in a press release.

Auxin joined Suniva and other domestic module manufacturers in a mid-term review of tariffs in 2019. Mission Solar (Texas), LG Electronics (Alabama), and SunPower (now no longer manufacturing in the United States) all stated they supported the tariffs. .

No other US solar companies are listed as supporting today’s petition announcement, although Auxin and Suniva argue in the petition that Q CELLS (Georgia), LG and Mission Solar “may make their views known to the Commission after this submission.” to make”

See the petition here.

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