A California company on Thursday announced its plans to open a solar cell manufacturing plant in South Carolina as the site of its second manufacturing and production facility.
AQT Solar has selected Richland County as its new location, which company officials say will initially bring 60 new jobs this year and could eventually employ 1,000 people by 2014.
AQT Solar manufactures solar cells, which is the part of a solar panel that converts sunlight into electricity.
The State newspaper reported Thursday that AQT Solar plans to spend $300 million to build the plant in Blythewood, just 15 miles north of Columbia. The report also says that Richland County has agreed to reduce property taxes on the site for the next 20 years.
AQT CEO Michael Batholomeusz said, “We are excited to work with the state of South Carolina as we begin this next phase of our company’s development.” He says the new facility will increase the production capacity for AQT in the coming years and will help drive the clean tech industry creating thousands of sustainable, high value jobs.