Tongwei doubles polysilicon pipeline capacity with 200,000MT facility plans

One of Tongwei’s polysilicon plants. Image: Tongwei Solar

Chinese polysilicon supplier Tongwei Solar has signed an agreement with Leshan City, Sichuan Province to establish a 200,000 metric tonne (MT) polysilicon manufacturing plant.

Although subject to land, safety and environmental assessments, the facility is expected to be split into two 100,000MT phases, with the first being completed by the end of 2022.

Tongwei is investing roughly RMB14 billion (US$2.17 billion) in the project.

Currently, the company has a production capacity of 80,000MT of crystalline silicon production, with a 150,000MT pipeline. Factoring in the latest announcement, Tongwei’s production could jump to 430,000MT upon completion of the Leshan project.

In a stock announcement, however, the company said that market fluctuations could mean the project has fundraising issues, resulting in construction to stall and “fall short of expectations”.

The supply chain for solar-grade polysilicon remains constrained, with average spot market prices in China having more than doubled since the start of the year. Since early June, the average spot market price for polysilicon in China has stayed in excess of RMB200 per kilogramme, causing prices for solar wafers, cells and modules to spike accordingly.

Tongwei is the latest manufacturer to outline capacity expansion plans, joining the likes of Daqo New Energy and Xinte Energy in unveiling prospective additions of polysilicon output out to 2022.