Trina Solar To Set Up US Plant To Hedge Against Tariff Risks

Trina Solar To Set Up US Plant To Hedge Against Tariff Risks TrinaTracker Gets 108 MW Solar Tracker Order from Colombia

Trina Solar, which has come off a record H1 in revenues and profits, has decided to spend USD200 million on a solar panel plant in Texas, the United States. The move comes even as Chinese firms remain embroiled in tariff related issues for sales in the US, a key export market.  Earlier, Trina has also recently opened a tracker manufacturing plant in another key emerging market and region, Brazil 

Trina’s planned new factory will produce five gigawatts of solar modules per year and create 1,500 local jobs, the Changzhou-based firm said in a statement yesterday. The polysilicon used in the factory will come from the States and Europe, avoiding the risks that have landed many other Chinese firms in trouble for sourcing it from Xinjiang, where the US accuses China of using slave labour.

In August, the US commerce department had concluded that five Chinese solar panel companies, including Trina Solar, have been skirting US tariff laws by routing their operations through Southeast Asian countries, and should have additional tariffs imposed on them.

Trina Solar recently celebrated the milestone of crossing 150 GW in total shipments globally, and has been in the vanguard of pushing for the 210mm cell size as a standard for the industry.

The move to establish a US plant is likely to be sweetened possibly with IRA benefits as well, making the plant a viable option despite much higher costs than in China . A typical comparable plant in China would take the firm less than half the time and at least 40% lower costs to set up.

Trina joins many other Chinese, and even Indian manufacturers, considering panel factories in the US to ensure they are close to the booming market, as well take advantage of the high incentives under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) in the US.

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Prasanna Singh

Prasanna has been a media professional for over 20 years. He is the Group Editor of Saur Energy International