(DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER FILE)
GT Advanced Technologies in Merrimack filed for bankruptcy after it lost out on a lucrative partnership with Apple it pursued after the Obama administration ordered protective tariffs on Chinese solar panels. Up until then, GTAT was a major supplier of equipment China needed to make panels.
The U.S. International Trade Commission is expected to issue its first ruling on a tariff request on Sept. 22. It was made by two foreign-owned manufacturers seeking to impose both protective tariffs and a floor price on photovoltaic cells and modules. The mere threat of a tariff has already driven up prices by 15 to 25 percent, according to Sam Lavallee, director of financing for ReVision Energy, a Brentwood-based company with offices in Concord, NH, Massachusetts and Maine.