China’s polysilicon prices fall on oversupply, weak demand

29 November 2012 01:41  [Source: ICIS news]

by Felicia LooChina’s polysilicon prices down on oversupply, weak demand

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Spot prices of solar-grade polysilicon have weakened in China, undermined by an imbalanced market where supply is outstripping demand, industry players said on Thursday.

Spot polysilicon prices fell by yuan (CNY) 5,000/tonne ($803/tonne) in the week ended 28 November to CNY95,000-105,000/tonne on DEL (delivered) China basis, ICIS data showed.

“Demand is bad,” said a Chinese polysilicon producer.

Solar-grade polysilicon – which is usually traded in chunks, granules and rods – is the raw material for making solar wafers, ingots, cells and modules.

China’s polysilicon imports fell by 34% from September to 5,738 tonnes in October, while polysilicon exports were up by 1% to 97 tonnes in the same period, according to China customs data.

Many polysilicon plants remain closed in China because of a weak business climate, market players said.

“The [polysilicon] plants have been closed since October last year. Other polysilicon and downstream players are running their plants at half the capacities,” said one market player.

The trade row between China and the US, as well as the EU, is showing strains on the Chinese market, the players said.

The US will issue anti-dumping and countervailing duty orders on imports of crystalline silicon photovoltaic cells from China after it was affirmed that the imports are hurting the domestic industry, the US International Trade Commission (USITC) said late on 7 November.

The country’s Department of Commerce, on 10 October this year, finalised anti-dumping duties (ADDs) on imports of Chinese solar cell products ranging from 18.32-249.96%. It also set final countervailing duties (CVDs) at a range of 14.78-15.97% for Chinese producers/exporters of the products.

In China, the companies with existing polysilicon stocks are eager to offload supply in order to gain back cash, market players said.

“However, the falling prices become meaningless as many buyers are not keen at all,” said a separate player.

($1 = CNY6.23)

By: Felicia Loo

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