Dec 8, 2021 - Energy & Environment

U.S. approves $500M for First Solar's module factory in India

An aerial view shows sheep grazing next to photovoltaic cell solar panels in the Pavagada Solar Park on October 09, 2021 in Thirumani village, Karnataka, India.

Aerial view of sheep grazing next to photovoltaic cell solar panels on October 9 in Thirumani village, Karnataka, India. Photo: Abhishek Chinnappa/Getty Images

The U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) will provide up to $500 million in debt financing for the U.S. company First Solar's plan to build a major module factory in India.

Why it matters: The DFC said its the largest debt financing transaction in its history. And the WSJ delves into the geopolitics of the deal, noting it's "putting American taxpayer money behind a bid to weaken China’s dominance of the solar industry’s supply chain."

The big picture: The announcement says most of the facility's output is expected to be used in India's growing solar market and notes India is a "key partner to the U.S. in the Indo-Pacific region."

What they're saying: “This transaction represents another milestone in the United States effort to drive alternative supply chains — and to articulate a vision for climate finance that drives our development mission," said Dev Jagadesan, the DFC's acting CEO, in a statement.

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