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Panasonic to end solar cell production in US with Tesla

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    Kyodo

Tokyo, Japan   /   Wed, February 26, 2020   /   07:30 pm
Panasonic to end solar cell production in US with Tesla Tesla chief executive Elon Musk showed off the 'Model Y' late Thursday at the company's design studio in the southern California city of Hawthorne, and the company began taking orders online. (Bloomberg/File)

Panasonic said Wednesday it will end its joint solar cell production with US electric car maker Tesla by the end of May and focus on sales of its own brand solar panels in the US market.

The Japanese electronics maker said it will continue its joint production of electric vehicle batteries with Tesla.

The two companies agreed in 2016 to jointly produce solar cells at Tesla's factory in the state of New York. Since then, cheaper products from Chinese manufacturers have been dominating the global solar panel market.

"The decision to transit away from US solar manufacturing in Buffalo aligns with our global solar strategy, our efforts to optimize development and production, and supports Tesla's long-term plans to continue and expand its operations," Panasonic said.

Panasonic's EV battery business for Tesla achieved profitability in the October to December period after suffering a series of losses resulting from the huge initial investment.