Suntech Reduces Production at Goodyear Arizona Factory
Suntech Power (NYSE: STP) will stop two of three production shifts and reduce its workforce at its Goodyear, Arizona, solar panel manufacturing facility. The slowdown in production is due to global oversupply and higher production costs related to recent import tariffs imposed by the U.S. government.
The Goodyear facility's annual production throughput will decrease from about 45MW to 15MW, and roughly fifty positions will be eliminated. The decision is in line with Suntech's global restructuring efforts to right-size production capacity and reduce operating expenses by 20% in 2012 and 2013.
"We will continue to produce solar panels in Arizona to meet the needs of our customers, particularly those who are willing to pay a premium for U.S.-manufactured products," said E.L. "Mick" McDaniel, Managing Director of Suntech America. "Our employees in Goodyear have done a tremendous job, however all PV manufacturers globally are facing challenging market and political conditions, and rationalizing production is necessary to maintain a competitive cost structure."
On November 7th, the U.S. International Trade Commission voted to impose unilateral tariffs of 35.97% on Suntech solar cells produced in China. Solar cells are a key component