• Solar project developers that started projects in the US in 2019 have got an extension from the Treasury Department due to the pandemic
  • They have time now till October 15, 2020 to get their equipment under ITC regime
  • US Court of International Trade has foiled USTR’s attempts to have the imported bifacial solar module exemption from Section 201 revoked

The US Treasury Department has come to the rescue of solar power project developers extending 2019 safe harbor provisions for them to avail the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) till October 15, 2020 in view of COVID-19 related challenges.

This extension allows projects that started in 2019 more time to qualify for this scheme, the department specified in its guidance. Greentech Media (GTM) said this means solar project developers to get their equipment bought in 2019 to be delivered by October 2020 under the ITC regime.

Sharing the update, Erin Duncan, Vice President of Congressional Affairs for the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said, “We appreciate the additional layer of clarity the Treasury Department has provided with respect to solar projects started in 2019. Today’s action shows that solar energy is an economic driver with bipartisan appeal. This action is among a number of steps policymakers can take to add jobs, inject tens of billions of dollars into the economy and help this country recover from this awful crisis in red states and blue states alike.

This decision is in response to the demand of some bipartisan senators to extend the ITC safe harbor extension due to the pandemic in response to which earlier in May 2020 the Treasury Department hinted at rules modification (see US Solar ITC Safe Harbor May Get Extended). `

Bifacial solar modules

In another update from the US solar market, the US Trade Representative’s (USTR) attempts to have exemption to imported bifacial solar modules from paying tariffs under Section 201 revoked by the US Court of International Trade met with failure. As of now that is. Industry and experts believe sooner or later the exemption will be lifted.

The exemption to bifacial solar has been in place since November 2019 when a US Court pulled back the safeguard duty exemption responding to an Invenergy petition (see US Court Exempts Tariffs On Imported Bifacial PV Panels).