D PV Magazine USA
The Uighur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) was passed in the United States last December and came into force this summer. The law bans all imports from China’s Xinjiang region, unless the products are determined to be related to forced labor.
To comply with the UFLPA, companies must submit a comprehensive supply chain map, a complete list of all workers in an entity subject to “refutable presumption” that there is a connection to forced labor, and evidence that the workers was not subject to the conditions. Forced labor practices are typical and voluntary.
ROTH Capital Partners CEO Philip Shen says an industry liaison has confirmed that up to 3 GW has been held since the law came into force. Shen said that from now until the end of the year, 9 to 12 gigawatts of solar modules could be prevented from entering the US market.
The Chinese region of Xinjiang, which is home to 50% of the world’s supply of polysilicon, has come under scrutiny for its human rights abuses and the forced labor of Uighurs and other ethnic minorities in China. Beijing has repeatedly denied allegations of forced labor.
The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said US developers plan to install 17.8 GW of capacity this year. However, only 4.2 GW has been installed and commissioned in six months, as module supply problems have led to cancellations and delays. Module supply issues can continue to hinder deployment.
“The world and the American people cannot tolerate the presence of products manufactured in exploitative conditions by Uighurs and other minority ethnic groups in their global supply chains,” said US Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh.
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