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Market Insight

PV module demand surges and prices rise in the United States as developers rush to secure products ahead of trade case outcome

July 06, 2017  | Subscribers Only

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A rush to buy PV modules prior to the potential introduction of tariffs resulting from the Suniva and Solarworld petition in the United States has caused a shortage in supply and price increases in recent weeks.

Key Points

  • Demand for PV modules has surged in recent weeks as developers look to secure a higher stock of modules prior to any possible action taken as a result of the Suniva and Solarworld petition. A decision on the case is due in September.
  • As a large part of global PV cell capacity cannot serve the US market due to existing trade tariffs, this spike in demand has created a shortage of modules for the United States PV market, and led to sharp price increases.
  • Prices have risen to such an extent that it is now conceivable that Chinese products which are subject to the lower anti-dumping tariffs could be sold in the United States.
  • It is unclear whether any new restrictions or tariffs imposed as a result of the Suniva and Solarworld petition would apply to the companies that are already subject to anti-dumping tariffs. If they are excluded from the new case, and prices remain at current levels, then the impact on the United States PV market could be less sever than initially anticipated.

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