Italy’s proposed retroactive cuts on its solar feed-in tariff are a form of theft, according to Photon Energy.

In a proposal from the Ministry of Economic Development dated 5 June, PV projects over 200kW and subscribed to the FiT will be asked to accept one of two changes. They can extend the term of their FiT payments from 20 to 24 years, effectively thinning them out or take a straight 10% cut. The level of the cut was later revised to 8%.

Parliament has 60 days from the date of publication to decide on the proposals.

Photon Energy called the action a “kleptomaniac decision” and accused the European Commission of not doing enough to prevent such measures.

“The European Commission is not only letting it happen but is instrumental in removing Bilateral Investment Treaties between EU member countries, which have traditionally been a last line of defence for investors,” said Georg Hotar, CEO, Photon Energy.

“To add insult to injury, we are invited to choose the method of execution for our investments," added Hotar.

“Investors, together with a plethora of Italian and international banks, have deployed some €50 billion (US$68.3 million) in good faith and are now the victims of a highly irresponsible government,” he said.

The plans have been called "illegitimate" and legal action remains a possibility.

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