Friday, January 26, 2018

This phoney outrage is getting old.

2018

President Trump on Monday imposed tariffs of 30 percent on imported solar panel technology in a bid to protect domestic manufacturers while signaling a more aggressive approach toward China.

The move is a major blow for the $28 billion solar industry, which gets about 80 percent of its solar panel products from imports.

The Solar Energy Industries Association predicted the tariffs would increase prices and kill 23,000 jobs. The group represents manufacturers as well as installers, sellers and others in the field. Source.


2014 under Obama.

The department announced anti-dumping duties of 26.71 percent to 78.42 percent on imports of most solar panels made in China, and rates of 11.45 percent to 27.55 percent on imports of solar cells made in Taiwan. In addition, the department announced anti-subsidy duties of 27.64 percent to 49.79 percent for Chinese modules.

“These remedies come just in time to enable the domestic industry to return to conditions of fair trade,” said Mukesh Dulani, president of SolarWorld Americas. “The tariffs and scope set the stage for companies to create new jobs and build or expand factories on U.S. soil.” Source.

Listen I'm for trade. People who trade with each other are less likely to go to war. Having said that - most of the agreements we have with China were made before China was a developed economy. We of course gave them an advantage because they were weaker. Now that China is mature - they should be treated as an equal rather than the third world China I grew up with.

1 comment:

Capital of Texas Refugee said...

Once again we're being bitten by Nixon-era policies ...

The Nixon administration's private agreement with Edgar Kaiser was the other really stinking bad deal, and we're still living with the consequences.

As much as I am not a friend of the Democrats, they had it right when they ran Nixon out of office, and JFK had it right when his speech writer had him say that "a rising tide lifts all boats".

Obama had it massively wrong when he went against JFK's speech writer's wisdom, and we're going to be paying for that for a while as well.

Many of the tariffs have no teeth, however, and others are pointless.

Take a look at the 400% tariff on precision aluminum extrusions and you'll see what I mean. There's a way around it: you simply have a "systems integrator" in a third country add the components to an "assembled finished system" so they can list the entire thing with another HST code for import to the US.

And so some of that 400% tariff aluminum gets listed as an "assembled finished system" that's a computer, which is then allowed into the US with zero tariff because of an exclusion for assembled computer equipment.

Another way around this is to sell precision aluminum extrusions as non-precision ones. I have a stack of Chinese-made large power FET and regulator heatsinks for some hobby projects that are technically non-precision aluminum, and yet every single one of them mics to within 0.0005" tolerance (or at least so says my American-made Starrett micrometer).

The thing is, I can't get these particular parts from anywhere in the US, even at a lower level of precision, so it's not exactly "dumping", is it?

As for solar panels, the major thing keeping that industry afloat in the US has been government involvement (or in some cases the lack of it) ...