Import duties on Chinese solar modules and cells are probably extended by 18 months

2/20/17, 1:28 PM -

Contrary to protests from the industry import tariffs on Chinese solar modules are expected to be extended by 18 months. The EU commission must announce the final decision by latest March 5.

Probably the import tarriffs on Chinese solar modules and cells will be extended by 18 months. Major manufacturers like Trina Solar or Jinko Solar already went out the Minium-Price-Undertaking (MIP) already and import from facilities outside of China to Europe.

On Friday February 17 the EU's Appeal Committee called for a extension of the penalties on imports of Chinese solar modules and cells. There is no official statement yet.

Initial proposal for a 24-month extension

According to Kristina Thoring, spokesperson for the Solar Power Europe trade association, the panel voted to extend the anti-dumping and anti- subsidy duties by 18 months from March on. The EU Commission had presented a corresponding proposal a few days ago. Initially, tariffs were to be extended by 24 months as of March, but this was rejected by a majority of EU Member States. The European Commission must finally decide on an extension by March 5 at the latest.

Solar Power Europe demands for a more sensible compromise

James Watson, CEO of SolarPower Europe said "This case is the first to go to an Appeal Committee which shows how unpopular these measures are." "The Commission has been required to reduce the application period from 24 to 18 months on both anti-dumping and anti-subsidy measures. Yet, a much more sensible compromise for our industry would have been 12 months' application period with a clearer intent of ending the measures" added Watson. The Commission is now expected to open interim reviews into the Minimum Import Price undertaking and the administrative burden of the measures. Kristina Thoring, Political Communications Advisor at SolarPower Europe, stated "Member States and the European solar industry will look to the future and await the removal of the duties as a boost for our sector. We look forward to working with the Commission to ensure a growing European solar sector to the benefit of European consumers, solar businesses and the European Union's climate change objectives."     

Solar Power Europe and industry associations such as the BDEW and the Solar Alliance for Europe (Safe) reject the import tariffs because this makes solar electricity unnecessarily expensive. EU Prosun is in favor of the tariffs. (HCN)

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