EPIA statement on European Commission decision to impose provisional anti-dumping duties on Chinese solar panel imports

(PresseBox) ( Brussels, )
The European Commission today decided to impose provisional anti-dumping duties on imports into the EU of solar panels, wafers and cells originating in the People's Republic of China. A provisional duty of 11.8% will be imposed on 6 June 2013 and will be applicable until 6 August 2013, at which point the average duty level will increase to 47.6%. It is important to remember that a final decision regarding this anti-dumping investigation will only be made by December this year, and that definitive duties, if any, will be decided by the Council representing the 27 European Member States.

As the voice of the global solar photovoltaic industry in Europe, EPIA has maintained a neutral position in this case (and in other pending trade cases affecting the sector). This decision to impose provisional duties intervenes in a context of shifting market dynamics and production overcapacity, which led to an intense global competition. The fast price decrease observed over the last two years has resulted in negative margins over almost the entire value chain of the solar PV industry and put many of its players in severe financial difficulties.

Today's PV industry is on the way to becoming a self-standing and global industrial sector, ever less dependent on subsidies. At the same time, it is a sector considered by several countries as a strategic development initiative. EPIA therefore encourages all governmental and industry players to ensure fair competition respecting WTO rules and to engage at an early stage in discussions so as to avoid trade conflicts in the future and collaborate on a global scale.

Our organization is ready to work with policy-makers and all relevant stakeholders in order to ensure a strong industrial base in Europe. This will require a comprehensive strategy based on, among other things, a continued effort in R&D, a stable regulatory framework, easy access to capital both for project and industry financing and a mid-term certainty for investors based on binding targets for renewable energies in Europe for 2030.

EPIA remains confident that, no matter what the final outcome is of this case, the mid- to long-term prospects for solar PV in Europe and around the world remain solid and will play a key role in the needed economic recovery.
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