U.S.-based solar energy company SunPower announced this week it has put an indefinite hold on a $20 million plan to expand factories and create hundreds of new jobs in the U.S. after President Trump imposed a massive new tariff on imported solar panels, according to Reuters.
SunPower, which is based in San Jose, Calif., said it has halted its plan to expand in California and Texas until it can guarantee an exclusion from Trump’s new 30% federal solar technology tariff that would be placed on all imported solar technologies.
The Trump administration touted its tariff as a way to protect American manufacturing jobs, but SunPower argues that it will actually hurt their bottom line and result in fewer jobs in America’s growing $28 billion solar industry.
The US solar industry imports about 80 percent of its solar panel products.
The majority of SunPower’s solar technologies are manufactured in the Philippines and Mexico.
“We have to stop the $20 million investment because the tariffs start before we know if we’re excluded,” SunPower Chief Executive Tom Werner told Reuters. “It’s not hypothetical. These were positions that we were recruiting for that we are going to stop.”