News on imports

News on suppliers, market trends and technology innovations in polysilicon and wafer production is selected, assessed and written for you by Bernreuter Research.

Hemlock Semiconductor’s polysilicon plant in Hemlock, Michigan (USA)

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U.S.-based polysilicon manufacturer Hemlock Semiconductor Corporation will lay off 50 employees, the company announced internally on June 18.

REC Silicon’s fluidized bed reactor polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington at dusk

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As the Phase 1 trade agreement between the USA and China comes into force on February 15, U.S.-based polysilicon manufacturer REC Silicon intends to restart its plant in Moses Lake.

Ministry of Commerce (Mofcom) of China, press conference on February 9, 2017

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Domestic media speculate that China could allow bonded trade to fulfill its commitment to increasing U.S. polysilicon imports under the Phase 1 trade agreement despite extended duties.

2020 tariffs on polysilicon imports from the USA and South Korea into China

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The Chinese Ministry of Commerce (Mofcom) announced on January 19 that the duties on polysilicon imports from the United States and South Korea will remain unchanged for another five years until 2025.

China’s Vice Premier Liu He (left) and U.S. President Donald Trump present the Phase 1 trade agreement

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The Phase 1 trade agreement signed by the U.S. and China on January 15 includes solar-grade polysilicon, but the high Chinese import duties on U.S.-made polysilicon remain untouched.

China’s market shares in global production capacity along the PV value chain (solar-grade polysilicon, solar ingot, solar wafer, solar cell, solar module)

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Expecting a decrease in demand in view of the shrinking market outside China, Wacker is planning to cut the 650-strong workforce of its U.S. polysilicon plant by 20 employees or around 3%.

REC Silicon’s fluidized bed reactor polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington at dusk

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In view of no visible progress in the trade negotiations between the USA and China, REC Silicon has placed its fluidized bed reactor (FBR) polysilicon plant at Moses Lake in a long-term shutdown.

REC Silicon’s fluidized bed reactor polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington at night

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While trade negotiations between the USA and China have stalled, polysilicon manufacturer REC Silicon puts its last hope in talks between the two rivals at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan.

Shares of global polysilicon production capacity

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U.S.-based REC Silicon is edging closer to shutting down its polysilicon plant in Moses Lake, Washington. The factory is currently running at 25% of its capacity.

Wacker’s integrated chemical factory in Burghausen, Bavaria

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Analysts at Credit Suisse predict that “Wacker will remain a marginal producer of solar grade polysilicon near term and will be squeezed out by low cost Chinese production longer term.”