The escalating trade war between the US and China is increasingly hitting the solar industry. The latest round of tariffs proposed by US President Donald Trump could include PV inverters, say analysts. (Photo Credit: www.whitehouse.gov)
- US government is considering a fresh round of tariffs to be imposed on goods imported from China
- It will be in addition to the already announced 25% tariff on $34 billion of Chinese goods, and the proposed $16 billion worth of imports coming from China
- The latest round of tariffs may include PV inverters, according to Roth Capital Partners
- PV inverter companies producing in Europe would still have easy access to the US market, while those producing in China would be negatively impacted
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The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has released a fresh list of products being imported into the country from China th be brought under trade tariffs. Though it is still unclear which products are related to the PV industry, solar inverters might be included .
Analysts at Roth Capital Partners say the $200 billion worth of products to be slapped with 10% tariffs proposal appears to include inverters. If American tariffs cover PV inverters, these could impact the business of leading suppliers. “SolarEdge has the ability to invert its manufacturing base and serve the US from Eastern Europe, while Enphase serves the US 100% from China. We believe this also could impact Huawei, though Huawei may also have manufacturing pivoting ability. These tariffs could be become effective as early as Aug/Sep,” said Philip Shen of Roth.
USTR is seeking public comments to its proposed new list. If it gets implemented, it will be the third time the US under President Donald Trump would implement trade tariffs on Chinese products imported into the country. On July 6, 2018, the US imposed a tariff of 25% on $34 billion of Chinese import goods. Another round of tariff for $16 billion worth of goods is in the offing. The latest proposed tariff would be on $200 billion Chinese imports into the US.
Inverters are not on the list of products on which the US imposed a 30% import tariff in January 2018 (see Trump Slaps 30% Tariff On Imported Cells & Modules). However, the import tariffs is going to have a major impact on the US solar market’s growth for quite some time, said GTM Research (see US Adds Only 10.6 GW In 2017).