QUICK NEWS, January 31: NEW PROOF OF CHINA’S SUN PRICE GAMING; CHINA’S VIEW ON TURBINE TOWER PRICE GAMING; BIG BUCKS IN SMART GRID SECURITY
NEW PROOF OF CHINA’S SUN PRICE GAMING
SolarWorld: Import Surge Shows Tariff Evasion By Chinese Solar Producers
Jessica Lillian, 27 January 2012 (Solar Industry)
"SolarWorld and its partners in the Coalition for American Solar Manufacturing (CASM) have unearthed new PV module import data that, according to the coalition, proves that Chinese solar producers flooded the market with product at the end of 2011. The CASM believes this information warrants the application of retroactive duties on Chinese imports.
"SolarWorld filed its initial anti-dumping complaint and countervailing-duty petition last fall, claiming that low-priced crystalline silicon (c-Si) PV cells and modules from Chinese companies have violated international trade laws and harmed U.S.-based solar manufacturing…The International Trade Commission (ITC) made a preliminary determination last December that there is a ‘reasonable indication’ that Chinese manufacturers' practices are detrimental to the domestic solar industry…[The new CASM analysis] found that Chinese c-Si producers have more than doubled their imports into the U.S. since July 2011. This surge, the coalition says, constitutes ‘critical circumstances’ (as defined by the U.S. Department of Commerce) and justifies the implementation of tariffs on imports dating back to Nov. 15…[A decision on that is due] Feb. 15."
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"Suntech…increased its imports into the U.S. by 76% in November, compared to October…[D]ata from the Customs and Border Protection's Port Import Export Reporting Service (PIERS)…[shows] Trina Solar's imports surged 209% in the first half of last December…[O]verall, Chinese imports of solar cells and modules in 2011 increased 346% by quantity and 138% by value, year-over-year. Since 2008, imports from China have risen 939% by value and 1,664% by quantity.
"Whether the end-of-2011 ramp-up in imports is linked to the threat of potential duties, however, remains up for debate…Suntech…[said] the Dec. 31 expiration of the U.S. Department of Treasury's Section 1603 cash-grant program created a strong uptick in demand for the company's products in the U.S. Per the rules of the Section 1603 program, a solar developer needed to at least begin construction on a PV project by the end of 2011 in order to remain eligible for the incentive…Trina Solar similarly denied SolarWorld's claims…Analysts from Jefferies & Co. also attributed the spike in Chinese imports to normal seasonality trends and the end of the Section 1603 program…[President Obama has] indicated support of the complaint…"
CHINA’S VIEW ON TURBINE TOWER PRICE GAMING
China Voices 'Deep Concern' Over U.S. Wind Tower Probe; Investigation by U.S. Commerce Department will examine whether towers from China and Vietnam were subsidized and sold at less than fair value.
January 21, 2012 (AFP via Industry Week)
"China expressed ‘deep concern’…after the U.S. launched a probe into Chinese wind towers that it suspects of being unduly subsidized and sold at a loss on the American market…[saying it would] hamper bilateral cooperation in the field of new energy…harm the interests of U.S. industries…[and] go against global efforts to tackle the challenges of climate change and energy security…
"The U.S. Department of Commerce…[has] opened an inquiry on wind towers made in China and Vietnam…The petitioner for these investigations is the Wind Tower Trade Coalition, comprised of Broadwind Towers...DMI Industries...Katana Summit...and Trinity Structural Towers..."
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"…[China's Ministry of Commerce said if] hopes the U.S. side can respect relevant laws and facts, and abide by the commitment made at the G20 summit in Cannes that all countries should avoid introducing new trade protectionism…
"A wind tower is the structure that supports the engine and blades used to generate wind energy, and the tower captures that energy…If the probe reveals the towers have been sold at a loss, the U.S. could take out anti-dumping measures, conforming to the rules set down by the World Trade Organization…In 2010, imports of utility-scale wind towers from China and Vietnam were valued at an estimated $103.6 million and $51.9 million, respectively…"
BIG BUCKS IN SMART GRID SECURITY
Pike Pulse Report: Smart Grid Cyber Security Threat Management; Assessment of Strategy and Execution for 15 Leading Cyber Security Vendors
"Smart grid cyber security remains a nascent market…[with] established smart grid specialists, niche players, and well-known enterprise security vendors…[C]yber security is often considered a mature market…[but] smart grid cyber security…is not mature at all. The leaders that we identify in this analysis are well positioned for today’s market but some of the large corporations entering the scene can shape a market to their own
"…For the moment, size and scale appear to be somewhat of a disadvantage. Specialist companies have fared well. The ability to quickly react to the market has prevailed so far, but it is by no means certain that large size will remain a disadvantage in the future…"
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"Some trends in the smart grid industry may cause significant change during the coming twelve months. Chief among those, utilities are making it clear that they see the most meaningful ROI in distribution automation, not in smart metering. Smart grid vendors, and therefore security vendors as well, are beginning to hear and process that message. The Leaders in our ranking already have done that.
"This Pike Research report evaluates 15 of the leading cyber security threat management vendors in the smart grid market and rates them on 12 criteria for strategy and execution, including vision, go-to-market strategy, partnerships, product strategy and roadmap, technical innovation, geographic reach, market share, sales and marketing, product performance and features, product portfolio, control system focus, and staying power…"