The European Union has officially elected not to extend anti-dumping duties against panels imported from China, with the minimum import price now ceasing to exist from midnight Monday 3 September 2018.
In a statement made this afternoon, EU DG Trade confirmed that it was in the “best interests of the EU as a whole” to let the measures lapse having considered the needs of manufacturers and the solar supply chain as a whole.
The measures, effective since December 2013, have essentially prevented Chinese manufacturers from dumping solar panels into EU member states by setting a minimum price at which the panels can be imported, protecting domestic manufacturers.
However, the measures have grown controversial and the EU elected to renew them for just 18 months in March last year as opposed to the usual five years.
This was perceived to be an exceptional circumstance and acted as a compromise between the two opposing sides of the case but, having concluded that the market situation had not changed to the extent to justify their extension, the duties will now be allowed to lapse.
Greg Arrowsmith, policy advisor at the Association of European Renewable Energy Research Centres (EUREC), told PV Tech: “Europe can do a lot more to support its PV industry than maintain the MIP, especially today. The MIP did however demonstrate that when push came to shove, the EU put fair trade above free trade, and that was the right policy.
“EU countries need to create space in the subsidised part of the PV market for technologies and products with excellent environmental profiles. We signed a letter in May calling for this. European technology can and should meet such criteria.”
More to follow…