Friday, June 6, 2014

The "Chinese situation" on US solar energy market

China, the world's largest solar panel producer, is often taking their trade of solar panels into a gray area, with the most recent example being the official US investigation which showed that China had distributed solar panels onto the American energy market at illegally low prices.

In order to counteract these dumping methods the US Commerce Department plans to introduce much higher anti-dumping duties on Chinese solar panels at the end of July this year, in order to protect domestic manufacturing sector. These new duties should be 18-35% higher compared to the initial duties that were introduced in 2012.

It has been reported that 35.21 percent taxes will be placed on products by Wuxi Suntech Power, 18.56 on any imported material from Trina Solar, and 26.89 percent on other Chinese producers.

Whether this is the right move for US solar industry it is still too early to say. On one hand this could lead to a more developed domestic solar manufacturing sector but could also lead to, as critics argue, increase of solar power prices across the entire United States.

If this move should lead to higher solar power prices, it will slow down the transition to renewables in many of US states.  Not to mention it could also mean loss of many new jobs in US solar industry.

Chinese are, of course, angry with this proposed decision. and have stated that this decision will by no means help the development of US solar industry.

Anti-dumping measures against Chinese solar panels are not only the issue for United States. The same problem exists in European Union and their governing body decided to set a minimum price for panels and a volume limit through 2015.

The war on global solar energy market has started. The battle is on with the winner still unknown.