CUSMA panel says U.S. tariffs on solar products from Canada are unlawful

United States and Canada flags

The Government of Canada announced victory in the second-ever dispute under the Canada-U.S.-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA). In a unanimous decision, the CUSMA Panel found that safeguard tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration on imported crystalline silicon photovoltaic (CSPV) solar modules from Canada violate CUSMA rules and recommended that the United States adhere to its commitments under the trade pact.

The United States, which originally imposed these tariffs in 2018 as part of a global safeguard measure, will have until March 16 (45 days from the Panel’s decision) to terminate the tariff on imports from Canada in compliance with the Panel’s recommendation.

Heliene, a provider of North American made solar modules in Ontario, Minnesota, and Florida, is definitely in favor of the decision.

“Today’s decision benefits solar workers and producers across both countries. I am grateful to the Government of Canada for its work in this landmark case to uphold CUSMA rules and unleash even more solar sector investment and manufacturing in North America,” said Martin Pochtaruk, President of Heliene. “We look forward to moving ahead with new expansion plans and developing the world’s premier high-quality and cutting-edge solar products to serve the North American market.”

Canadian Minister of International Trade Mary Ng stated: “It has been made clear today in the CUSMA dispute settlement panel’s report that tariffs on Canadian solar products are in violation of CUSMA. Canada will work toward the complete removal of these unjustified tariffs. Canada will also ensure that our solar industry, as well as all Canadian industries and workers, can fully benefit from CUSMA.”

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