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Suntech Starts Construction of Shanghai Thin Film R&D and Manufacturing Plant
WUXI, China, May 23, 2007 /Xinhua-PRNewswire via COMTEX News Network/ -- Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP), one of the world's leading manufacturers of photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules, recently announced that it has begun construction on a thin film R&D and manufacturing facility in Caohejing Hi-tech Park in Shanghai, China. The first phase of the new plant is expected to begin operation in 2008 reaching 50MW of thin film solar cell production capacity in 2009.

Suntech's thin film module production will be based on technology that deposits amorphous and micro-crystalline silicon thin film on glass substrate. The product will use less than 2% of the silicon required to manufacture equivalent crystalline silicon PV products. Suntech currently projects that the thin film modules will have a solar conversion efficiency of 6% to 9% and an initial production cost of approximately $1.20 per watt (based on 6% solar conversion efficiency), which is forecasted to continue to decline as both production scale and conversion efficiencies increase. The thin film modules will be nearly 6 square meters in size, which would make the balance of system installation costs of Suntech's thin film solution significantly lower than other PV solutions.

"After having acquired MSK, one of the industry leaders in the building integrated photovoltaic products (BIPV) space, we were very pleased to see that there is both a strong and long term global sales market for these products, especially thin film PV modules. We anticipate many complementary sales opportunities to our traditional PV product customer base. We plan to combine our thin film product with MSK's BIPV product thereby capturing a greater portion of the PV value chain in a higher margin, higher ASP and higher value added product segment," said Dr. Zhengrong Shi Suntech's Chairman and CEO.

"We believe that Suntech is uniquely positioned to take advantage of this long term sales opportunity not only because of MSK's leading BIPV capabilities, but also as we have significant thin film expertise among our senior management and R&D team. In fact, a majority of our executive officers, including myself, have had long and substantive experience in thin film product research and development. Our new facility's proximity to Shanghai will also help us continue to attract highly qualified personnel and put Suntech in an excellent position to further promote solar solutions in the regions that we serve," continued Dr. Shi.

"While BIPV is currently a relatively small segment of the overall solar market, it is one which we expect will grow rapidly in the coming years," added Dr. Shi. "Low projected production costs, which are projected to continue to fall from a very low base, when combined with growing residential and commercial demand for our leading BIPV solutions will help make our products very competitive in this space."

Suntech is already an established global leader in the building integrated photovoltaic products (BIPV) space through its 2006 acquisition of Japan's MSK Corporation. In addition, many senior members of Suntech's R&D team and its officers have significant expertise in the thin film field. Dr. Shi was a senior research scientist and the leader of the Thin Film Solar Cells Research Group in the Centre of Excellence for Photovoltaic Engineering at the University of New South Wales in Australia and holds multiple patents in thin film technology. Prior to founding Suntech, Dr. Shi and various of Suntech's key officers and researchers were employed at an Australian PV company engaged in the commercialization of next-generation crystalline silicon thin film technology.

Suntech recent letter of intent with U.S.-based Open Energy to further BIPV initiatives is intended to expand BIPV sales of each company which will be furthered by Suntech's thin film initiatives. As part of the collaboration, Suntech will manufacture Open Energy's SolarSave(R) PV Tiles and jointly promote BIPV products in the North American market.

About Suntech

Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. is a leading solar energy company in the world as measured by both production output and capacity of solar cells and modules. Suntech provides solar solutions for a green future. Suntech designs, develops, manufactures, and markets a variety of high quality, cost effective and environmentally friendly PV cells and modules for electric power applications in the residential, commercial, industrial, and public utility sectors. Suntech's majority-owned subsidiary, MSK Corporation is one of the top-ranked companies in the building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) space. Suntech's customers are located in various markets worldwide, including key markets throughout Europe, Japan, China and the United States. For more information, please visit http://www.suntech-power.com .

Safe Harbor Statement

This press release contains forward-looking statements. These statements constitute "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and as defined in the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "will," "expects," "anticipates," "future," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates" and similar statements. Among other things, Suntech's expectations with respect to its thin film initiatives and strategies as well as the growth of the thin film market above contain forward-looking statements. Such statements involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Further information regarding these and other risks is included in Suntech's filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, including its annual report on Form 20-F. Suntech does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required under applicable law.

    For more information, please contact:

     Steven Chan
     VP of Business Development
     Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd.
     Tel:   +86-510-8531-8910
     Email: ir@suntech-power.com

    In the United States:
     Sanjay M. Hurry
     Vice President
     The Piacente Group, Inc.
     Tel:   +1-212-481-2050
     Email: suntech@tpg-ir.com

    In China:
     Rory Macpherson
     Consultant
     Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide
     Tel:   +86-10-8520-6553
     Email: rory.macpherson@ogilvy.com