- Hanwha Solutions has announced plans to discontinue production at its Eumseong module factory in South Korea
- The decision was based on the sales performance of the plant in 2022 and to improve the company’s operational efficiency
- The group now wants to focus its resources on the US market where it eyes IRA related tax benefits for solar production
Hanwha Solutions is discontinuing its solar PV production site in Eumseong, South Korea from December 17, 2023 as it focuses attention on the lucrative US market to maximize Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) related tax benefits.
In a stock exchange announcement, Hanwha said it is adjusting module production sites company-wide to improve operational efficiency. It will continue to operate the Jincheon plant where the company manufactures both cells and modules.
The decision was taken based on sales of the Eumseong plant in 2022, according to the company that claims this will not impact its normal business activities.
Hanwha operates a 3.5 GW solar module production plant at Eumseong through Hanwha Qcells. A report by local media portal, Alpha Biz, said that this decision will lower the company’s domestic solar module production capacity from 6.2 GW to 2.7 GW.
Earlier, Hanwha had reported a 9.7% YoY drop in Q3/2023 sales due to lower module sales (see 9.7% YoY Drop In Hanwha Solutions’ Q3/2023 Sales).
According to local media reports, the decision to discontinue the Eumseong plant is a result of the slowdown in domestic demand over the last year as the current administration under President Yoon Seok-Youl prefers nuclear power (see South Korea’s Non-Hydro RE To Account For 46 GW In 2032).
On the other hand, demand in the US, where Hanwha is building an 8.4 GW integrated solar value chain, is growing (see Hanwha Solutions Planning 8.4 GW US Production Capacity).
Nonetheless, in October 2022, Hanwha announced an investment of $545.6 million in the South Korean solar energy industry ‘as a preemptive’ response to the growing global solar market. According to the plans announced back then, Hanwha Qcells was to expand its TOPCon module production and M10 wafers at the Jincheon fab, while Hanwha Solutions Advanced Materials Division was to expand its solar EVA sheet production capacity, targeting up to 300,000 tons production from September 2025. It announced a joint venture (JV) for EVA production with GS Energy Corp.