Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Trina Solar drops plans for polysilicon plant

April 14, 2008

The company said the polysilicon supply market has changed for the better, and it no longer needs to build the plant.

Changzhou, China-based Trina Solar (NYSE: TSL) announced today that it has canceled plans to build a $1 billion polysilicon production plant, saying supplies of the material have become more available.

"We have made this strategic decision after careful assessment of our raw material requirements, in conjunction with recent and favorable long term polysilicon market and supply condition developments." said Jifan Gao, chairman and CEO of Trina Solar.

Trina said the plant was expected to have a capacity of 10,000 metric tons.
As a result of the change in plans, Trina said its related equipment supply contract with Merrimack, N.H.-based GT Solar would lapse.

But Trina said the two companies would continue to work together.

"We wish to reaffirm our strong working relationship with our partner GT Solar, which continues to provide us with advanced multicrystalline technology platforms to support our target of 350 megawatts of annualized module capacity by the end of 2008," said Gao.

Trina said it would continue to sign long term contracts to meet its strategic polysilicon supply needs.

Last November, Trina said a deal to get polysilicon from Leshan, China's Sichuan Yongxiang Polysilicon.

Under that six year contract, Sichuan is expected to supply Trina with enough virgin polysilicon to produce 1,300 MW of modules.

In addition to supply contracts, Trina said it would consider strategic investment options in future polysilicon projects, although the company said it has no projects currently under consideration.

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