It would seem that the Department of Commerce has chosen its next target to slap some hefty trade tariffs on, that certainly didn’t take too long eh? This time they’ve stayed in China, but gone for another of the potential renewable winners of the world, wind energy, quoting the same old story as last.
Last December, the DoC received complaints from multiple American wind companies complaining that China was yet again unfairly subsidising and trading its domestic wind towers, reducing costs and outcompeting other manufacturers, namely in the US. By reducing their trading costs out of China, in an uncannily similar vein to the recent solar trade war, the US market is being flooded by cheap-as-chips wind towers designed for large-scale generation of 100KW and over.
Of course, the US they again doesn’t agree with this whatsoever, and has chosen to file preliminary reports to determine what value to set the counter-tariffs at, with both China and Vietnam under scrutiny, who has also been seen to be ‘unfairly’ trading its wind capacity. As many of you who have followed the solar mess that is the anti-dumping case, it has not only brought anger and protest from both US and Chinese sides, but has been suggested to be threatening the entire solar industry as a whole, and no doubt this will have the same effect on the wind industry.
What differs between both cases however is the size of each respective nation’s wind industry size. The US has been steadily throwing up wind towers in recent years in bigger and bigger quantities, and now has a formidable wind-generation capacity, whereas China’s influence in the market is much smaller, with solar their chosen renewable path.
So, my question is this…why start yet another trade dispute between China and themselves, when the DoC knows, 1) how much consumers/manufacturers/sellers rallied against the solar tariffs, and 2) when wind energy is in the best interest of everybody to continue growing worldwide, especially in the dirtier Asian countries yet to move on from coal; China’s industry is only small and this response could severely cripple it.