U.S. solar panel prices are set to rise in the short term due to last month’s imposition by the Obama administration of 31% tariffs on some Chinese panels, two of China’s largest solar companies said Tuesday.
The tariffs, however, are unlikely to significantly hit Chinese companies that have diverse global supply chains and production capacities outside China, said executives of Suntech Power Holdings, the world’s largest manufacturer of photovoltaic solar panels, and JinkoSolar Holding Co. Ltd.
The comments come after the U.S. government last month imposed 31% tariffs on some solar panels produced in China alleging they had been dumped, or sold below cost.
“We will see some price increases in the short-term” for solar panels in the U.S., JinkoSolar’s Marketing Director Isabelle Christensen said on the sidelines of the Intersolar industry exhibition in Munich.
She said that there will be a time lag befor the increases kick in, as solar installations in the U.S. in the first half of the year are usually driven by sales at the end of the previous year. A study by the Solar Energy Industries Association and GTM Research, published this week, predicts the U.S. market for solar panels is likely to double in 2012, although tariffs could contribute to slower growth in 2013.