(By Balaseshan) China Sunergy Co. Ltd. (NASDAQ: CSUN), a solar cell and module manufacturer, said it has set up a new manufacturing facility in Istanbul, Turkey with local partner Seul Energy Investment Corp.
In September, the two companies signed agreements to invest jointly in three newly established companies under the name "CSUN Eurasia" to produce PV cells and PV modules in Turkey and to invest in downstream solar projects in Turkey and neighboring countries.
The first 150 MW solar module line installed in the new facility will begin producing solar panels in January 2013, while 100MW solar cell line is now under installation and will start manufacturing in March 2013.
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Moreover, the company is currently planning to move additional 200MW equipment to Turkey plant from the facilities in Shanghai in the first quarter of 2013 and to gradually ramp up production in the first half of next year, a plan subject to market dynamics and Turkey plant's production progress.
As a major step forward in CSUN's global operations strategy, the new plant, covering more than 22,000 square meters has been set up in facilities in the Trade Free Zone in Istanbul, Turkey, a traditionally symbolic meeting point between Europe and Asia. China Sunergy expects the new plant to create over 1,200 job opportunities locally.
The company expects Turkey to become its second largest manufacturing base after China. The new factory will be able to efficiently serve customers across Europe and even the U.S. CSUN Eurasia expects to hold a grand opening ceremony in Istanbul early next year.
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Last July, it was reported that China Sunergy had signed a memorandum of understanding to establish a Turkish manufacturing base with another local partner, Akfel Group. However, investment negotiations between Akfel Group and China Sunergy has been suspended. Parties aim to jointly pursue regional downstream project opportunities in the future.
CSUN closed Wednesday's regular session up 7.89% at $1.44. The stock has been trading between $1.03 and $3.18 for the past 52 weeks.