The US Department of Commerce (DOC) announced the result of the anti-dumping (AD) preliminary affirmative determination on July 25th. While Chinese PV products shipped to the US were imposed AD tax rates of 26.33%-58.87%, Taiwanese PV products shipped to the US were imposed AD tariff rates of 27.59%-44.18%. “The gap between Taiwan’s and China’s tax rates was small, which constrained Taiwan to increase its competiveness. Instead, it’s a frustration to Taiwan’s PV industry as Taiwan will lose many orders transferred from Chinese manufacturers. Overall, it will be a huge challenge to relevant makers in the future,” said Arthur Hsu, research manager of EnergyTrend, a subsidiary of Taiwan-based market intelligence firm TrendForce.
“Taiwan’s PV products that shipped to the US will be imposed anti-dumping tax rates of above 25%. Manufacturers cannot absorb the extra AD tariffs simply through adjusting procurement or production processes. In contrast to US’ local market trend, Taiwan’s high-efficiency products are the only products that have competitive advantages. Hence, Taiwan’s high-efficiency product development will be closely linked to its future outlook in North America and it becomes crucial for Taiwanese PV companies to accelerate progresses of global deployment to maintain their market share in North America. Among all, Motech, which was imposed the highest tax rates, may reconsider its role in North America,” added Hsu. Meanwhile, Chinese manufacturers’ strategies turned out to be successful in the trade war. In fact, Chinese makers have taken firm stands in North America as the AD tax gap between Chinese and Taiwanese makers was small. For major suppliers in North America, Trina Solar has the most advantages in terms of tax rates. Its AD and CVD tax rates were 29.3%, which were better than Yingli and other competitors. It’s more likely that Trina will use more of their own cells or Chinese cells in the future.
US PV manufacturers, in contrast, can increase their competitiveness in their own nation thanks to the extra tariffs. Also, PV makers from other regions including South-eastern Asia, South Korea and Japan may benefit from the high AD and CVD imposed on Taiwanese and Chinese makers.