Tariffs help solar panel maker Stion raise hiring

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Updated: 6/17/2014 12:52 pm

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Solar panel maker Stion says it will hire 23 more employees, bringing its total to 177 employees at its Hattiesburg plant as new tariffs on Chinese solar panels cause an increase in demand for American-made panels.

Stion Vice President of Sales Peter DeGraff says capacity will basically double at the Hattiesburg facility.

The U.S. Commerce Department announced earlier this month that it would impose antidumping duties on solar panels assembled in China, even if they used non-Chinese solar cells.

The San Jose, California, company is still far from reaching the $400 million investment and 1,000 employees it promised when it signed an economic development deal with Mississippi in 2011 in exchange for a $75 million loan. Stion says it has invested more than $150 million so far.

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