Reports: Panasonic, Tesla to scrap solar panels partnership

By – Associated Press – Wednesday, February 26, 2020

TOKYO (AP) – pulling out of its partnership with to produce solar panels at a factory in New York state, the Japanese electronics maker said Wednesday.

’s production at the factory in Buffalo will end by May, with an exit by September, it said in a statement. The decision is to streamline the company’s global solar energy operations, it said.

will continue making batteries for ’s electric vehicles in another factory in Nevada, it said.

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also quoted as saying that the move won’t affect ’s solar business plans.

will also continue selling solar panels under its brand in the U.S. through its own distribution channels, it said.

The two companies’ agreement to work on solar energy was announced in 2016.

will offer severance packages to employees at the Buffalo plant. will hire as many as possible of those who wish to keep working there, according to .

did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

“The decision to transition away from U.S. solar manufacturing in Buffalo aligns with our global solar strategy,” said executive Shinichiro Nakajima.

a major manufacturer of home appliances, such as washing machines and refrigerators, but its operations include services and products for businesses.

, based in Palo Alto, California, leads the world in electric vehicle sales.

Competition from cheaper Chinese manufacturing of solar components has posed a problem for as it strives to reposition itself for future growth.

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