Turkey opens anti-dumping investigation into Chinese module imports

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Turkey-based manufacturers Solarturk Energy, Sunlego Energy systems and Zahit Energy are behind the complaint. Flickr: Nico Kaiser

Turkey’s Ministry of Economy has opened an investigation into alleged dumping of Chinese solar panels in Turkey, local NGO Solarbaba has confirmed to PV Tech.

Turkey-based manufacturers Solarturk Energy, Sunlego Energy systems and Zahit Energy are behind the complaint that led to the investigation, according to a government paper.

The anti-dumping investigation, to be carried out by Turkey's General Directorate, regards alleged unfair competition coming from the import of solar modules from the Republic of China.

In May, a representative from Chinese solar manufacturer Jinko Solar said that Turkey was poised for long-term growth in PV development over the coming years. A Trina Solar representative also cited Turkey as a strong market moving forward.

As well as well-documented anti-dumping cases in the US and the EU, investigations have also been previously launched in Australia and Canada. Australia's investigations were resurrected in January, meanwhile Canada approved trade duties on Chinese modules and cells last July.

Last September, domestic solar cell manufacturers in India also called on the government to start anti-dumping investigations for a second time.

In a written response to questions, Solarbaba commented: “Modules imported from China was not a problem at all in Turkey, considering that the cumulative installed PV power is just around 600MW today. Out of this figure, around 80% are Chinese 1st tier modules with premium quality. 

“There is no solar cell production in Turkey, around 15 small-sized (except CSUN with 500MW capacity) manufacturers import all the solar cells from China and do assembly locally. The anti-dumping investigation has been initiated with the application of three local manufacturers, SolarTurk , SunLego and Zahit Energy. All have a lamination capacity of around 50MW (on 3 shift basis)

“This move was expected by the industry, even if there is no logical reasons supporting the move. The real motivation could be to force the big international players to establish local manufacturing facilities locally in Turkey. There are rumors that the MIP could be around US$0.70 which does not make sense at all in a country where we witness prices of around US$0.48/W for 1st tier modules. 

“The result will be the same as in Europe, shrinking market, hesitating foreigner investors, many projects switching to 'stand by' mode. According to the investigation, which only applies to Chinese modules at the moment (but could be extended to other asian countries), the manufacturer has now 37 days to answer some detailed questions about their manufacturing cost (trying to prove that they are selling under manufacturing cost).”

This story has been updated to include comment from Solarbaba.

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