Crony capitalism masquerading as trade protectionism in the solar panel industry

Trade protectionism is pretty much ALWAYS about crony capitalism.

(From The Washington Examiner)

In an unusual twist, the potential imposition of protective tariffs would actually help foreign-owned companies and hurt U.S. workers and consumers.

The request for relief at the ITC came from Suniva, a solar cell manufacturer that was founded in the U.S. but is now majority owned by Shunfeng, a Chinese company. You might imagine there was some irony when the Chinese-owned Suniva declared bankruptcy in April, citing heavily-subsidized, Chinese-made solar panels as a primary reason for its struggles.

The irony only grows, however, when one considers the long history that Suniva itself has in benefitting from government largesse. Suniva has already received roughly $20 million in support from U.S. taxpayers, and has utilized U.S. prison labor to help keep its costs down relative to its competitors. The company also benefitted from a $780,000 taxpayer-funded loan guarantee from the U.S. Export-Import Bank, which Heritage Action labeled “cronyism.”

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