China extends duties on US, Korean solar polysilicon for 5 years

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January 20 (Renewables Now) - China’s Ministry of Commerce, or MOFCOM, announced on Sunday a five-year extension of the anti-dumping tariffs on imports of solar-grade polysilicon from the US and South Korea.

The ministry's decision follows an investigation into the matter launched a year ago. In a statement, MOFCOM said it has determined that the dumping of imported solar-grade polysilicon from the US and South Korea may continue or reoccur if the existing measures are terminated. This, in turn, would damage the local solar-grade polysilicon industry.

The extension is effective as of today, January 20, 2020, and comes a few days after the US and China reached an initial trade deal including a provision for the Asian nation to buy polysilicon manufactured in the US.

The existing anti-dumping tax rate will remain as is. More details are available in the following table.

Company name Nationality Rate (%)
REC Solar Grade Silicon LLC US 57
REC Advanced Silicon Materials LLC US 57
Hemlock Semiconductor Corporation US 53.3
MEMC Pasadena, Inc. US 53.6
AE Polysilicon Corporation US 57
All Others (USA) US 57
OCI Company Ltd. South Korea 4.4
Hankook SiliconCo., Ltd. South Korea 9.5
Hanwha Chemical Corporation South Korea 8.9
SMP Ltd. South Korea 88.7
Woongjin Polysilicon Co., Ltd. South Korea 113.8
KAM Corp. South Korea 113.8
InnovationSilicon Co., Ltd. South Korea 113.8
All Others (South Korea) South Korea 88.7

US importers of polysilicon also continue to face anti-subsidy duties of up to 2.1%.

One of the companies most affected by the closure of the Chinese markets to US polysilicon manufacturers, namely REC Silicon ASA of Norway, commented that it anticipated this outcome and does not expect the announcement to affect China’s recent pledge to buy solar-grade polysilicon from the US.

Still, the Norwegian company noted it has not yet decided on a restart of its USD-1.7-billion (EUR 1.53bn) polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington. REC Silicon shut down the particular plant in July 2019 due to the uncertainties surrounding the US-China trade dispute, resulting in about 450 job cuts at the site.

The company pointed out that it will assess the market for solar grade polysilicon in light of the recently-signed Phase 1 trade agreement.

(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.902)

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