- Hanwha has announced plans to invest $320 million in expanding its US and South Korean manufacturing capacity
- In the US, it will build 1.4 GW module fab worth $170 million targeting a completion timeline of H1/2023
- In South Korea, it will invest $150 million to expand its overall cell manufacturing to a total of 5.4 GW by 2023
Qcells has said it will expand its solar manufacturing capacity in the US and South Korea with plans for a 1.4 GW module production facility in America and expanding its cell capacity in South Korea, all for a total investment of $320 million.
Hanwha Solutions, the parent of Qcells, says it aims to invest $170 million on adding 1.4 GW solar module production facility in the US where Qcells already operates a 1.7 GW module fab in Dalton, Georgia. The new fab is likely to come online within H1/2023 and will take the company’s total US capacity to 3.1 GW. It will be ‘equivalent to 1/3rd of current US solar module production capacity’.
In South Korea where Hanwha produces solar cells, it aims to invest $150 million to expand the same fab. Once the expansion is complete in 2023, the company will boast its overall cell capacity here as 5.4 GW. Management declared this would be its 1st investment in Korean cell manufacturing in 5 years.
While these expansions are in line with the growing demand for clean energy across the globe as the world aims for net zero emissions, for Hanwha it also makes strategic sense as in the US it can expand its Made in America footprint.
In the US, Hanwha Corporation holds around 12% and Hanwha Solutions’ holds approximately 21.33% stake in Norway headquartered polysilicon maker REC Silicon ASA that operates manufacturing facility in the US that ensures it low-carbon supply of polysilicon (see Hanwha Invests In US Silicon Production).
It recently contracted OCI Malaysia to supply it $1.2 billion worth of polysilicon for 10 years, from July 2024 to June 2034, to be used mainly for the production of low-carbon solar PV module supply to the North America and Europe markets.
Both REC Silicon and OCI use hydropower to operate their production facilities.
With these investments, the company is mulling further expand in the US, including in the wafers and cells segment, but is waiting for the implementation of ‘long-term, durable policy designed to incentivize solar manufacturing’.
“Ensuring policy certainty is crucial to realizing our goal of rebuilding the US solar value chain,” said Hanwha Qcells CEO Justin Lee.