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Chinese Solar Billionaire Doubles Fortune Despite US Sanctions

After the US government barred imports of Hoshine Silicon products, Luo Liguo and his family have only gotten richer — and they’re expanding operations in Xinjiang

A solar power plant in Xinjiang.

A solar power plant in Xinjiang.

Source: AFP/Getty Images

About a year ago, the US sanctioned trade with a little-known Chinese company at the heart of the solar energy supply chain, alleging it relies on forced labor in the Xinjiang region. The action had immediate and lasting effects, worsening relations between the two nations and plunging the US solar industry into chaos. 

But in their economic and policy aims, the sanctions have yet to prove successful. Shares of Hoshine Silicon Industry Co. are up 111% since the restrictions were announced, while the fortune of founder Luo Liguo and his family has more than doubled. And, with a $1 billion investment from the Luos, Hoshine is expanding its operations in Xinjiang, further entrenching it and the region in the solar supply chain.