US solar panel maker cutting 1,600 jobs, halting production at Ohio plant

FILE (AP Photo)

TOLEDO, Ohio (AP) – The biggest U.S. manufacturer of solar panels is cutting a quarter of its jobs worldwide and will halt production at its only North American plant in Ohio.

First Solar Inc. says it’s facing challenging market conditions and needs to retool operations to begin making a more efficient solar panel.

The company based in Tempe, Arizona, will cut 1,600 jobs worldwide.

Details about the restructuring plan haven’t been released, but the company says it will stop production at its plant near Toledo that employs about 1,400 workers.

The Blade in Toledo reports the shut down is expected to last more than a year.

First Solar Chief Executive Officer Mark Widmar says the Ohio plant has higher production costs. But he says Ohio will continue to be their innovation center. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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