Solar Panels Used In Australia Set To Be Banned
As China continues to block Australian coal, barley and wines the US has moved to ban Chinese solar products and the materials they are made from, the same panels are sold in Australia.
The solar panels set to be banned by the USA are manufactured in China’s Xinjiang region which alleged human rights abuses against China’s ethnic Uyghur Muslim minority.
This is the same region that is using labour to manufacture appliances sold in Australian stores.
Changhong or ChiQ as they like to be called is a Company that owns Changhong Meiling (which was previously called Hefei Meiling) a manufacturing operation that the US Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) claims is implicated in human rights violations and abuses in China.
The Chinese Company manufacturers both appliances and TV’s.
Overnight the Biden administration moved to take action with factories in Xinjiang — where advocacy groups and a panel of United Nations experts say Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities have been subjected to human-rights abuses and forced to work against their will.
These people are being forced to produce roughly half of global supply of polysilicon, a material critical for solar panels and semiconductors.
China has denied the allegations, saying they’re an attempt to undermine successful businesses.
US Customs and Border Protection is expected to announce a “withhold and release order,” targeting Hoshine Silicon Industry (Shanshan) Co., Ltd. Imports from that company would be blocked from entry at U.S. ports and only released if they can prove the goods are not made with forced labour.
Bloomberg claims that separately, the Commerce Department will add five Chinese entities to its export blacklist.
According to a notice set to be published in the government’s Federal Register on Thursday, they are Hoshine; Xinjiang Daqo New Energy, Co. Ltd; Xinjiang East Hope Nonferrous Metals Co. Ltd.; Xinjiang GCL New Energy Material Technology, Co. Ltd; and Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps.
Companies that sell to those entities will then require approval from the U.S. government.
In Australia, the Federal Government is allowing solar panels from the region to be openly sold without any restrictions.
The Biden administration’s move is seen as a blow to the solar industry.
Solar is in the midst of a rare period of increasing costs that threaten to delay new clean energy installations.
Polysilicon prices have recently surged amid strong demand, and solar panel costs are up since the start of the year, according to PVInsights.
While Xinjiang is a major polysilicon hub, the material is sent for further processing in factories in other parts of China and other countries before it’s ultimately assembled into the solar panels that are shipped to the U.S and Australia.