The U.S. Department of Commerce has issued a letter outright rejecting an unlawful request for circumvention tariffs on solar products from three countries in Southeast Asia. The petitions were initiated by an anonymous group of companies, and if imposed, would have resulted in the loss of 46,000 solar jobs over the next two years.
Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), responded to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s decision.
“In a major victory for America’s 231,000 solar workers, the U.S. Department of Commerce has rejected petitions for circumvention tariffs on solar imports from Southeast Asia,” says Hopper. “The petitions have already had a chilling effect on the industry’s supply chain, and if imposed, we would have seen massive project cancellations and job losses within days. The decision provides a rush of certainty for companies to keep their investments moving, hire more workers and deploy more clean energy. This is a critical time for climate progress, and we cannot afford to go backwards at a time when we need to be deploying more clean energy than ever.
“As we’ve seen before, trade restrictions can cause irreparable harm to the solar industry,” Hopper adds. “The circumvention petitions were one of many trade actions roiling the solar industry and some damage has already been done. SEIA will continue to monitor the ramifications of these harmful and unlawful circumvention petitions on the solar industry. In the meantime, solar companies and workers can take a deep breath. Today’s decision, coupled with investments from the Build Back Better Act, will enable the solar industry to lead America’s transition to a prosperous clean energy future.”