Trina Solar, a solar panel manufacturer based in China, is finalising plans to inaugurate its third production plant in Vietnam, a calculated move aimed at boosting its exports to the US following the imposition of US tariffs on its products manufactured in Thailand.
The company, which is the largest solar energy producer globally by revenue, is poised to invest approximately $400 million to construct a sprawling 25-hectare plant that is projected to commence operations by 2025.
This information, according to Reuters, came in light of heightened scrutiny and tariffs being placed on products from its bases in Thailand.
The escalation in investment in Vietnam is reflective of Trina Solar’s agile business strategy in response to evolving international trade landscapes, cited Reuters.
Additionally, the possibility of escalating the investment to $600 million is also under consideration, though details on this front remain closely guarded as Trina Solar has opted to withhold comment.
This strategic development emerged following the US Department of Commerce's investigation that concluded last month, implicating Trina Solar among other Chinese solar energy corporations that are realigning their manufacturing bases in Thailand and other Southeast Asian countries to circumvent US punitive tariffs on solar panels.
It is crucial to highlight that these anticipated tariffs, effective from mid-2024, will predominantly impact Trina Solar’s operations in Thailand. Nevertheless, the establishment of manufacturing units in Southeast Asia by Chinese companies to facilitate exports to the US continues to be closely monitored.
According to S&P Global Market Intelligence, Southeast Asian nations are the source of approximately 80 per cent of the solar panel supply to the US, with Vietnam contributing around one-third of the total units imported in Q1/2023.
Currently, Trina Solar stands as a pivotal player in Vietnam’s solar manufacturing landscape, operating two factories within the nation. The precise array of products to be manufactured in the new facility remains a subject of speculation, with some insiders suggesting a focus on solar cells and others proposing silicon panels.
Concurrently, multiple industrial zones are being considered for the construction of the new facility, with Trina Solar seeking expert opinions, including feng shui consultations, to finalise the decision.
The discourse also encompassed the potential power supply challenges for Trina Solar's new venture in Vietnam, as the company weighs up the disruptions caused by the heatwave in June that impacted hydroelectric power production and led to cuts.
Trina Solar’s established ventures in Vietnam include the solar energy manufacturing plant in the Van Trung Industrial Park in Bac Giang that was completed in January 2017. With an investment of around $100 million, it has a designed total production capacity of 1GW.
Another significant establishment is Trina Solar Energy Development Factory in Thai Nguyen. Aimed at manufacturing photovoltaic cells and solar panels, it was initiated in December 2020 with an investment of approximately $203 million.
| ||Norsk Solar signs deal with CME Solar to promote solar energy solutions |
Norway's Norsk Solar has inked a deal with Vietnam's CME Solar to advance renewable energy initiatives in Vietnam, especially solar energy solutions in the country.
| ||Hana Micron Vina launches pioneering semiconductor factory in northern Vietnam |
Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang launched the Hana Micron Vina semiconductor plant in Bac Giang, a pioneering project with future plans to invest over $1 billion and create 4,000 jobs by 2025.