Preliminary trade duties imposed by the US on Chinese and Taiwanese solar products have forced the price of Chinese modules in the US up by an average 9%, according to GTM Research.
The US analyst firm’s Global PV Pricing Outlook for Q3 2014 reveals a hike in average price from US$0.70 to US$0.78 per watt, the highest since the second quarter of 2012.
The increase is a consequence of stiff preliminary anti-subsidy and anti-dumping duties introduced by the US government in June and July to prevent Chinese manufacturers circumventing previous levies by using cells made in Taiwan.
GTM said the duties had made Chinese modules an average of 17% more costly in the US than similar modules sold in other parts of the world, and presaged likely changes in the global solar supplier landscape.
“With Chinese module pricing in the US now on par with competitors from Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea, China-based suppliers such as JinkoSolar, Trina Solar and Yingli Solar have lost their primary historical competitive advantage in the US,” said GTM’s Jade Jones, author of the report.
“This development sets the stage for significant shifts in the solar market landscape relating to supplier market share, supply agreements with downstream customers, and solar project economics, particularly in the more cost-sensitive utility-scale segment.”
According to GTM, since the imposition of duties, Chinese manufacturers have stopped using Taiwanese cells in modules shipped to the US, as they had been doing to avoid paying the 2012 tariff. Instead they are now opting to ship all-Chinese modules to the US and pay those slightly lower levies.