- Solar panel maker Canadian Solar is expanding its manufacturing network with a new factory in Thailand, the company announced yesterday.
- The five gigawatt solar photovoltaic wafer production site will be housed in Chonburi, Thailand, on the country's eastern gulf shore.
- The site is slated to open in March 2024, and will initially supply the company's existing factory in Chonburi. Beginning in 2025, it will supply Canadian Solar's cell factory in Jeffersonville, Indiana.
Canadian Solar announced plans for the $800 million Indiana site earlier this month, part of the company's touted plan to expand its U.S. manufacturing capacity. The Indiana solar cell factory will then supply the solar panel maker's module assembly plant in Mesquite, Texas, by the end of 2025.
The new factory is part of Canadian Solar's compliance with an August Department of Commerce ruling that found the company was one of four solar energy manufacturers that circumvented tariffs on solar products made in China by completing minor processing in Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. The department also ruled against BYD Hong Kong, New East Solar, Trina Solar and Vina Solar as part of the investigation.
Import duties will be reimposed on panels from the countries beginning in June 2024, after the Biden administration lifted import duties on solar cells and modules in June 2022.
Under the ruling, companies must certify that solar panels and cells contain non-Chinese wafers and other components, which will waive the circumvention findings otherwise applied to certain Southeast Asian countries.
"Establishing this solar wafer factory in Thailand is a key milestone that will enable us to better serve our U.S. customers with a more diversified and resilient supply chain," SVP Thomas Koerner said in a statement. "Importantly, it will also allow us to responsibly meet the new requirements related to the latest and adjusted [antidumping and countervailing duties] ruling by the U.S. Department of Commerce.”