Bloomberg reported that the U.S. Department of Commerce named eight solar energy companies, including the three leading Chinese companies LONGi Green Energy, Trina Solar, and JinkoSolar, to conduct a mandatory questionnaire survey to confirm whether they are assembling product in SE Asia to avoid U.S. import duties.
Other targets under investigation by the Department of Commerce include Canadian Solar, South Korea's Hanwha Q Cells, Chinese company BYD, Cambodia's New East Solar and Vietnam's Boviet Solar Technology. LONGi Green Energy, the world's largest solar energy company by market value, is under investigation for its Vietnam business, Vina Solar Technology.
The investigation has impacted the U.S. solar industry and disrupted the country’s net-zero plans, as companies suspend projects and cancel shipments to avoid high tariffs, the report said. The world's largest solar manufacturers, mostly based in China, have also turned their attention and products to the emerging European market amid U.S. disruptions.
However, this news still hit China's major solar manufacturers. JinkoSolar shares fell 5.3% on the 16th, Trina Solar fell 4.1%, and LONGi Green Energy fell 2.5%.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce announcement letter, the eight companies in Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam have until May 27 to submit information, including ownership structure and sources of materials for the production process. The Commerce Department has until Aug. 29 to publish its preliminary findings on circumvention and the deadline for a final ruling is extended to April 2023.