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The U.S. Imports Most of its Solar Panels a New Ruling May Make that More Expensive

The Department of Commerce has determined that solar panel manufacturers in four Southeast Asian countries are evading U.S. trade rules by using Chinese-sourced materials subject to tariffs without paying applicable duties. Those countries — Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand, and Cambodia — are responsible for nearly three-quarters of solar modules imported to the United States.

The ruling, unveiled Friday, means that new U.S. solar projects may soon be more expensive: manufacturers whose goods run afoul of Obama-era solar tariffs will be subject to additional import duties on their products.

Those duties, however, will not begin to be assessed until June 2024, when a waiver put in place by the Biden administration is set to expire.

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