Greentech Media Quotes Morten Lund on ‘Us vs. Them’ Mentality in U.S. Solar Manufacturing

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Attorney Morten Lund was quoted in Greentech Media in article titled “SolarWorld Americas Receives $5 Million Loan,” published February 28, 2018. The article discusses how companies are faring in the wake of the Section 201 trade case brought by solar cell manufacturers SolarWorld Americas and Suniva that ended with the approval by President Trump of new tariffs on imported crystalline-silicon solar cells and modules.

SolarWorld Americas’ creditors agreed to lend the company $5 million for operations as it works toward regaining full capacity utilization and profitability. However, Suniva has not yet shown signs of benefiting from the new tariffs, and the only companies so far to announce new U.S. factories are China-based JinkoSolar and Taiwan-based consortium United Renewable Energy.

“The 'us vs. them' rhetoric misses the complexity of modern business and manufacturing, Lund said. “Much (if not most) of the solar module manufacturing currently in the U.S. is by foreign-owned companies — Suniva itself is Chinese-owned. Meanwhile, leading U.S. companies have manufacturing facilities in Mexico and elsewhere.”

Though SolarWorld Americas sees the tariffs as a success, their reduction over time means lessening incentive for opening further U.S. facilities, which in any case, due to the automated nature of the manufacturing of solar modules, would not add large numbers of locally sourced full-time employees.

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Morten A. Lund
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