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Week in Review: Major updates on US solar module & inverter tariffs; Auctions in Kuwait & Turkey


21 Sept. 2018 by Tom van der Linden, Solarplaza

What dominated the solar headlines this week? While manufacturers like SunPower and Hanwha Q CELLS circumnavigated US trade tariffs on solar modules, new duties on solar inverters were announced. Kuwait and Turkey both announced RE auctions.


These were the most important solar industry related news headlines and stories that broke this week.


Import Tariffs

US announces 25% tariff on Chinese solar inverters

The Trump administration announced a new round of tariffs (worth $200 billion), which is also impacting the solar industry. The latest victim? Solar inverters. As early as September 24, a 10% tariff on Chinese-made solar inverters will go into effect, which will be increased to 25% by January 1.

SunPower gets its trade case exclusion

After bleeding up to $2 million in tariffs each week since the US import tariffs came into effect in January, SunPower finally got back a verdict on its appeal for exclusion. Considering the specialistic nature of its products and the locations of its manufacturing facilities (Mexico and Malaysia - so, not China), SunPower was relieved from their duties by a new document highlighting exclusions. The update seems to have been tailored specifically to SunPower, as it seems to be the only one qualifying and benefiting from the exemptions.

Hanwha Q CELLS goes for the 'Made in America' sticker

Hanwha Q CELLS revealed a new product strategy, which will see the company setting up module assembly operations in the US, to serve the country's utility-scale, residential and commercial markets, without hinder from import tariffs and duties.


Tender News

Turkey to launch 1 GW PV tender in January

Strong local content requirements may be embedded in the tender, according to the first draft of its rules, with selected projects required to rely on a 60% quota of modules made in Turkey. A 30 MW/ 90 MWh (AC) storage project will also be included at one of the three sites identified for the tender.

Kuwait oil company to host 1.5 GW solar tender

The Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) invited bids for solar energy project proposals up to 1.5 GW, as part of its envisioned Dabdaba complex, near the Saudi border. The bidding deadline was set at December 16, 2018.


French Offerings

Neoen goes to market: seeks $525m USD IPO

French renewable energy project development firm Neoen SA, announced their intentions to host an initial public offering (IPO), in which it hopes to raise around €450 million ($525 million USD). That would make it France's biggest IPO in 2018. Neoen currently has 2 GW of renewables in operation and under construction


News from India

$0.034 solar bid equalled in India – but is it viable?

The state’s second attempt to tender for 500 MW of capacity has made a mockery of predictions of rising PV electricity prices and exonerated utility for cancelling previous procurement round. But the absence of India’s cheapest solar energy generator from the latest exercise could be telling.


Projects

Enel breaks ground on 84.7 MW PV plant in Spain

Enel Green Power said it started construction on the 84.7 MW Totana solar PV plant in Spain. EGP estimates it will invest €59 million ($69 million USD) in the realization of the project.


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