SolarWorld Executives Testify Against Chinese Practices During ITC Hearing
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Gordon Brinser, president, and Kevin Kilkelly, president of U.S. sales, represented Oregon-based SolarWorld and the Coalition for American Solar Manufacturing (CASM) in testimony before the International Trade Commission (ITC) Nov. 8.According to the CASM, Brinser and Kilkelly sought to document how Chinese manufacturers are flooding the U.S. market with solar products and how the tactic, combined with massive government subsidies, has devastated American domestic manufacturers and jobs."By any measure, the imports of Chinese crystalline silicon cells and modules are injuring the domestic industry and threaten the domestic industry with even further injury," Brinser said in his testimony.
"From their executives' statements and by their actions, the Chinese producers' plans are clear: They intend to dominate the U.S. solar industry at the expense of the domestic industry and our suppliers."Brinser presented evidence that Chinese exports of solar cells and solar panels to the U.S. rose more than 350% from 2008 to 2010 and continue to rise. In fact, exports from China in July exceeded those from all of 2010, according to Brinser and the CASM."Market prices simply do not seem to apply to the Chinese producers," Kilkelly said. "Rather than allowing increased efficiencies to steadily decrease costs and prices, the Chinese government continues to pump billions of dollars of subsidies into their solar industry to build massive amounts of excess capacity.
Nearly 95 percent of their production capacity is targeted toward export markets, including the United States. "Chinese producers' only goal is to push huge volumes of cells and modules into the U.S. and other markets through extremely low prices," he continued.The CASM contends that the surge in Chinese solar manufacturing and exporting has been the primary cause for a 40% decline in world market prices over the past year. Moreover, the coalition says, the proliferation of these products has caused seven U.S. manufacturers to either close or downsize operations.In its petitions, SolarWorld has asked the federal government to impose duties to defend the domestic makers of crystalline silicon cells.
Spain-based PV module manufacturer Isofoton says that Korea-based Samsung has invested 50 million euros in the company. The funds will be used for the manufacture of selective-emitter solar cells.The financing will be structured in two blocks, with the first 30 million euros to be provided in 2012. According to Isofoton, this first phase will allow for the start-up of a new selective-emitter solar cell production line with a 100 MW capacity.The remaining sum, totaling 20 million euros, will be delivered in 2013, which is expected to enable Isofoton to expand its solar cell manufacturing capacity to 300 MW. Isofoton adds that it plans to open a manufacturing plant in Ohio next year.
Clean Power Finance, a provider of residential financing and solar sales and system design tools, and Solmetric Corp., a provider of design software and hardware for the solar sector, have entered into an agreement under which Solmetric's shading analysis and equipment performance modeling software are integrated into Clean Power Finance's solar sales platform, CPF Tools.The companies also collaborated on a new site measurement tool that automatically calculates critical site measurements, such as area and azimuth, to allow solar installers to complete a system design quickly and easily.Additionally, Clean Power Finance will offer solar installers 18 months of same-as-cash financing on the Solmetric SunEye 210 bundled with a CPF Tools license. This partnership significantly improves CPF Tools and makes the Solmetric SunEye 210 shading tool more accessible than before, according to the companies.
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