EU anti-dumping measures fill Isofotón’s 2013 order book

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Spanish solar manufacturer Isofotón has claimed to have filled its order book for the remainder of 2013 as a result of the EU and China’s anti-dumping measures.

The company has stated that its current sales will require its full production capacity for the rest of the year following a spate of orders from France, Italy and the UK.

In August the EU and China agreed to a minimum price for Chinese-manufactured solar products and an annual quota on the volume of imports.

“We have been seeing an increase in European orders of modules since early August,” said Ángel Luis Serrano, president, Isofotón.

“The anti-dumping measures are bringing about a rise in prices in the European market, and this has entailed a recovery in margins for the second half of 2013,” added Serrano.

A minimum price of €0.56 per Watt (US$0.74) has been applied to Chinese PV modules imported into Europe. An EU investigation found that products were being imported for less than the cost of manufacture in an attempt to seize market share. European manufacturers claimed they could no longer compete on price.

Isofotón’s director of communications Gemma Martin told PV Tech that the company had seen a 50% increase in European prices since March when the European Commission began requesting the registration of Chinese imports.

Despite improvements in the price landscape in Europe, the company warned that its long-term future would be linked its ongoing restructuring.

“The company continues to negotiate with investors the entry of new shareholders,” said Serrano.

In May 2013, the company announced that 360 jobs were at risk due to a pressure exerted on it by a combination of factors including a US$96 million lawsuit by polysilicon manufacturer Hemlock, a request for subsidies acquired by the company’s previous owner to be returned to the Andalucían government and the refusal of banks to offer the firm refinancing.

Martin told PV Tech that the subsidy case had been dropped while there are ongoing negotiations with Hemlock for an out of court settlement.

“On 2 August the prosecutor’s office closed the case. There have been media reports about other cases against us but we have not been notified of any other related cases,” she said.

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