Struggling PV manufacturer China Sunergy (CSUN) is planning to relocate its manufacturing operations in China and expand its manufacturing footprint overseas in a major new move. 

CSUN said that the actions were intended to improve its cost competitiveness and counter anti-dumping actions in the US, EU and potentially in other regions in the future. 

Tingxiu Lu, chairman and CEO of China Sunergy said: "Since the inception of our first oversea[s] plant - Turkey plant, our efforts to diversify CSUN's manufacturing base [has] never stop [sic]. The move helps to enhance our global supply chain, gain access to local customers and minimise potential negative impacts from anti-dumping cases in the US, EU, or elsewhere. Looking ahead, we will continue to improve our cost competitiveness and strengthen our global footprint by the combination of moving our existing facilities in mainland China and building new facilities in the countries which have cost and geographic advantages."

The company announced the plans in a press release celebrating the formal volume production ramp at its new 200MW solar cell plant in Incheon, South Korea.

CSUN noted that trial production had successfully started in May 2015 and said the company would consider expanding production to 500MW with additional production lines once the facility has reached around 50% utilisation rates. 

CSUN-branded solar modules would be produced by local Korean module assembly firms, according to the company. 

The company was one of the first Chinese producers to establish an overseas plant, located in Turkey, to supply primarily customers in Europe. 

CSUN had report revenue of US$91.5 million in the first quarter of 2015, compared to US$126.7 million in the prior quarter due to lower shipments to customers in China and Europe that generated a loss of US$12.2 million.

CSUN exited the first quarter of 2015 with cash and cash equivalents of US$32.4 million and restricted cash of US$147.4 million but has approximately $377.2 million in borrowings that fall due within 2015. The company raised going concern issues in its 2014 annual report. 

It remains unclear at this time what the company meant by 'moving existing facilities' and calls to the company in China were not answered at time of posting.

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