Australia nears solar anti-dumping decision



Australia’s anti-dumping commission is nearing its decision on whether or not to impose punitive tariffs on Chinese solar panels.

Following a complaint led by Tindo Solar in May 2014, the domestic manufacturing industry claims that unfair pricing from Chinese firms is harming the industry. The EU, US and Canada have all imposed duties in the past two years.

On 7 April the preliminary decision will be announced with final recommendations to the parliamentary secretary on 19 May and their decision following within 30 days.

In a recent submission to the investigation Tindo highlighted the removal of ReneSola from the EU price undertaking stating that it was “concerned at the predacious behaviour of the Company to dominate the market” and requested an increase in the dumping margin applied to the manufacturer.

The China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery and Electronic Products (CCCME), which represent the Chinese manufacturers, claims that investigators have failed to prove that the government of China (GOC) is influencing low PV prices.

In a statement in February the CCCME said the anti-dumping commission acknowledged that: “…at this stage of the investigation there is insufficient evidence to support the claim that the prices of the PV modules or panels in the domestic Chinese market were influenced by the GOC.”

JA Solar meanwhile has called for panels with power ratings over 300W to be exempt from any duties given that no domestic suppliers produce modules over 260W.

Tindo has been criticised, with one installer telling the investigation: “We do not accept that Tindo are a genuine manufacturer. All the critical components of a solar module, the all-important solar cell, the backsheet, glass and frame are all imported into Australia by Tindo. Tindo simply do some soldering and assembly. We struggle to understand how more than 50% of the cost of manufacture is incurred in Australia from an automated soldering and assembly line, which in itself does not in our opinion, constitute a substantial process. On this basis alone the application by Tindo should be dismissed.”

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