May 29, 2024

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Biden vetoed a resolution that would have reinstated solar energy tariffs

President Biden has vetoed a resolution that would reinstate tariffs on imported solar panels from some Southeast Asian countries, saying the decision would undermine his administration’s efforts to create a robust domestic supply chain for solar energy.

The resolution, which passed the House and Senate with bipartisan votes, would have undoed A.J Rule of the Ministry of Commerce which suspended tariffs on solar panels imported from Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. The rule went into effect in November, after Biden ordered in June to waive tariffs on solar panels from those Southeast Asian countries for two years.

The duty exemption was intended to address a shortage of solar modules, which was threatening US solar projects, while allowing the US to build up its domestic solar manufacturing capacity. About three-quarters of the solar modules imported into the US in 2020 came from Southeast Asia, White House He said last year.

in veto letter Biden said Tuesday his administration’s plan is working, noting that 51 new and expanded solar equipment manufacturing plants have been announced since he took office, and that several other private companies have committed to increasing their capacity to manufacture solar panels.

“America is now on track to increase domestic solar panel manufacturing capacity eightfold by the end of my first term,” Biden wrote. But this production will not come online overnight. The Department of Commerce Act supports American companies and workers in the solar energy industry and helps provide sufficient, clean, and reliable electricity to American households, while continuing to hold our business partners accountable.”

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Biden also said he has no intention of extending the Commerce Department ruling after it is set to expire in June 2024.

the The House passed the resolution last month in a vote of 221-202, with 12 Democrats and most Republicans voting for it. The Senate approved the resolution earlier this month by a vote of 56-41, and nine Democrats joined all Republicans except Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) to support it. The resolution was passed under the Congressional Review Act, which allows Congress to overturn federal agency rules through a simple majority vote.

The Solar Energy Industries Association, which represents more than 1,000 solar companies, urged Biden immediately to veto the resolution after Congress passed it, and on Tuesday praised Biden’s work.

“President Biden’s veto helped keep clean energy moving forward in our country, preventing a bill from becoming law that would eliminate 30,000 American jobs, including 4,000 in manufacturing,” SEIA President Abigail Ross Hooper said in a statement. solar energy”. “This action is a reaffirmation of the administration’s commitment to trade certainty in the clean energy sector, and a signal to companies to continue creating jobs, building local manufacturing capacity and investing in American communities.”

Republicans and Democrats who supported the resolution argued that China should be punished for circumventing the tariffs by having their products shipped through Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, according to first results In the investigation of the Ministry of Commerce.

Ultimately, Biden argued that the decision would hurt the development of the solar energy industry in the United States.

“Passing this resolution is betting on American innovation,” Biden wrote in his veto message. It would undermine these efforts and create deep uncertainty for American companies and those in the solar energy industry. Therefore, I refrain from this decision.”

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Maxine Joselo contributed to this report.