At the moment, there is a high influx of solar panels coming from China and other foreign countries. However, their low market prices offer them an advantage local companies find hard to outpace without regulations. Therefore, the U.S. International Trade Commission turned to Trump administration to impose as much as 35% solar tariffs.
The Trade Commission Agreed that Solar Imports Are Harming Local Business
On Tuesday, the four-member International Trade Commission recommended authorities to decide on new taxes in order to slow down imports of low-cost solar panels. The commission couldn’t agree on the best remedy for this case. However, the accord was unanimous when it was specified that this phenomenon is harming U.S. manufacturers.
Rhonda Schmidtlein is the chairwoman of the panel and proposed a range between 10 to 35% of tariffs on particular imports. Other two members of the commission drew a four-year plan with a tariff starting at 30%. However, its value would have to start decreasing incrementally. The fourth member proposed quotas on all solar assets that enter the U.S. from outside.
In September, a unanimous vote categorized the nature of solar imports as toxic for local manufacturers. Tuesday’s non-binding proposals are a follow-up to this decision addressed to the President of the United States. Donald Trump has until February to agree on a final solution.
Suniva Inc. and SolarWorld Americas are two of the U.S. companies that suffered extensive losses due to the boom of imports. Suniva filed for bankruptcy while SolarWorld could no longer support three-quarters of its employees.
Several Parties View Solar Tariffs as Toxic for the Community Solar Industry Created in the U.S.
In today’s world, solar panels have been installed on rooftops ten times faster than it used to be six years ago. On the other hand, several governors together with the main trade group for the solar industry are opposing the idea of solar tariffs.
They consider this move is going to make price tags explode nationwide. As a result, consumers will stop seeing solar power as a budget-friendly investment. The sales drop will translate into massive waves of layoffs within the solar industry.
“We urge President Trump to reject.”
The CEO of the National Electric Contractors Association, John Grau, endorsed this point of view. He claimed that the popularity of solar panels opened numerous positions for electrical workers who install these appliances. These middle-class jobs offer training for hard workers and help veterans fit in a civilian community once more.
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