• 7 hours Oil Prices Rise After API Reports Major Crude Draw
  • 8 hours Citgo President And 5 VPs Arrested On Embezzlement Charges
  • 8 hours Gazprom Speaks Out Against OPEC Production Cut Extension
  • 9 hours Statoil Looks To Lighter Oil To Boost Profitability
  • 10 hours Oil Billionaire Becomes Wind Energy’s Top Influencer
  • 11 hours Transneft Warns Urals Oil Quality Reaching Critical Levels
  • 12 hours Whitefish Energy Suspends Work In Puerto Rico
  • 13 hours U.S. Authorities Arrest Two On Major Energy Corruption Scheme
  • 1 day Thanksgiving Gas Prices At 3-Year High
  • 1 day Iraq’s Giant Majnoon Oilfield Attracts Attention Of Supermajors
  • 1 day South Iraq Oil Exports Close To Record High To Offset Kirkuk Drop
  • 1 day Iraqi Forces Find Mass Graves In Oil Wells Near Kirkuk
  • 1 day Chevron Joint Venture Signs $1.7B Oil, Gas Deal In Nigeria
  • 2 days Iraq Steps In To Offset Falling Venezuela Oil Production
  • 2 days ConocoPhillips Sets Price Ceiling For New Projects
  • 4 days Shell Oil Trading Head Steps Down After 29 Years
  • 4 days Higher Oil Prices Reduce North American Oil Bankruptcies
  • 4 days Statoil To Boost Exploration Drilling Offshore Norway In 2018
  • 4 days $1.6 Billion Canadian-US Hydropower Project Approved
  • 4 days Venezuela Officially In Default
  • 5 days Iran Prepares To Export LNG To Boost Trade Relations
  • 5 days Keystone Pipeline Leaks 5,000 Barrels Into Farmland
  • 5 days Saudi Oil Minister: Markets Will Not Rebalance By March
  • 5 days Obscure Dutch Firm Wins Venezuelan Oil Block As Debt Tensions Mount
  • 5 days Rosneft Announces Completion Of World’s Longest Well
  • 5 days Ecuador Won’t Ask Exemption From OPEC Oil Production Cuts
  • 5 days Norway’s $1 Trillion Wealth Fund Proposes To Ditch Oil Stocks
  • 6 days Ecuador Seeks To Clear Schlumberger Debt By End-November
  • 6 days Santos Admits It Rejected $7.2B Takeover Bid
  • 6 days U.S. Senate Panel Votes To Open Alaskan Refuge To Drilling
  • 6 days Africa’s Richest Woman Fired From Sonangol
  • 6 days Oil And Gas M&A Deal Appetite Highest Since 2013
  • 6 days Russian Hackers Target British Energy Industry
  • 6 days Venezuela Signs $3.15B Debt Restructuring Deal With Russia
  • 6 days DOJ: Protestors Interfering With Pipeline Construction Will Be Prosecuted
  • 7 days Lower Oil Prices Benefit European Refiners
  • 7 days World’s Biggest Private Equity Firm Raises $1 Billion To Invest In Oil
  • 7 days Oil Prices Tank After API Reports Strong Build In Crude Inventories
  • 7 days Iraq Oil Revenue Not Enough For Sustainable Development
  • 7 days Sudan In Talks With Foreign Oil Firms To Boost Crude Production
Alt Text

Unusual Ruling Could Impact Cheap Solar Panel Imports

The U.S. International Trade Commission…

Alt Text

Is The U.S. Solar Boom In Jeopardy?

The Trump administration is weighing…

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel J. Graeber

Daniel Graeber is a writer and political analyst based in Michigan. His work on matters related to the geopolitical aspects of the global energy sector,…

More Info

A U.S.-China War over Solar Power

A U.S.-China War over Solar Power

The United States could try to work out a deal that would end ongoing tit-for-tat disputes over trade in solar energy products. Last week, the European Union said it would hit back at Chinese manufacturers for dumping their solar energy goods in the European market. The U.S. Commerce Department did more or less the same last year and a senior White House official testified last week that trade policies can only work if they're fair. With China and the United States debating how best to accommodate the other's claims to power, the White House may have a few rabbits up its sleeve to resolve issues related to global renewable energy and trade issues.

European Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht last week said Chinese solar panels were sold on the European market below cost. This was giving Chinese manufacturers an unfair advantage over their European counterparts. In response, the EU said it would impose an 11 percent duty on Chinese solar panel imports. If China isn't willing to work out a compromise, that duty could increase to more than 47 percent by August.

Related article: Why Did Solar Stocks Soar?

"This has the potential to destroy an important industry in Europe if we don't act today," De Gucht said.

China dominates the world market in terms of production of solar panels. Exports of Chinese solar panels to the European market in 2011, the last year for which information is available, totaled $27 billion dollars. About a year ago, the U.S. Commerce Department targeted Chinese solar manufactures in one of the largest anti-dumping initiatives in U.S. history.  In the United States, China dominates the solar cell market, with about $3.1 billion worth of goods imported last year.

The Chinese government considers the renewable energy sector, solar power in particular, to be a vital component of a five-year development plan that runs through 2015. In a geopolitical climate that weighs military might more or less on par with economic strength, winning the solar race may be a shot over the U.S. bow given the high-profile bankruptcy of solar panel company Solyndra.

President Barack Obama met last week with Chinese President Xi Jinping in California as the U.S. military starts to shift its focus to the Asia-Pacific with the conflict in Afghanistan winding down. That's not necessarily an indication of pending war, at least not on the military front. If both world powers can figure out a way to work together on the margins of broader debates, there may be room for China and the United States at the top of the geopolitical heap, at least as far as the global low-carbon economy is concerned.

Related article: Solar Crisis: Cheap Chinese Solar Panels Prove Defective

Obama's international economic affairs adviser Mike Froman told a Senate panel last week during his nomination hearing to become a U.S. trade representative that broad-based trade policies can work, but only if they're fair. Lawmakers said they need to work with their Chinese and European counterparts on how best to settle the solar dispute. Froman said he was committed to open markets as well as effective trade laws that may work for both sides.

"There have been some initial discussions with both the European market and China about how to deal with this on a global basis," he said.

By. Daniela J. Graeber of Oilprice.com




Back to homepage


Leave a comment
  • Ken Lelek on June 10 2013 said:
    The Chinese have definitely cornered the PV market. I can't see a solution to Chinese subsidised PV in the near future.
  • SA Kiteman on June 11 2013 said:
    The panel could be FREE and the power still wouldn't be worth the price paid for the balance of system. The capacity credit precludes any significant economical use.

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News