With imports surging, Indian solar manufacturers revive demand for anti-dumping duty

M Ramesh Chennai | Updated on January 22, 2018

The Indian Solar Manufacturers’ Association has revived its demand for safeguard and anti-dumping duties on imported solar cells and modules. The association, a body of companies that produce cells and modules, sent a formal petition to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy on September 18, it is reliably learnt.

The association has demanded investigation into imports from EU, US, China, Taiwan and Malaysia, sources said.

The petition comes against the backdrop of surge in imports of solar cells and modules (cells made into modules). In 2014-15, India imported $820.95 million worth of cells and modules, but imports in the first four months of the current financial year (that is, April-July) were $381 million, or 46 per cent of last full year.

Most imports are from China. Of last year’s total imports, 73 per cent (or $603 million) came from China. The trend is holding up. In the current year, the Chinese have sold $283 million worth of solar cells and modules to India, or 74 per cent of total imports.

BusinessLine learns that the association has asked for both safeguard and anti-dumping duties. Safeguard duties are temporary measures to protect a domestic industry against sudden surges in imports. Anti-dumping duties are imposed when the exporters are established to be selling their products below fair market value.

Second attempt

This, as may be remembered, is the second time that the Indian domestic solar cell manufacturers are taking up the issue of dumping with the government. On an earlier occasion, upon the industry’s petition, the Directorate General of Anti-dumping of the Ministry of Commerce, investigated imports from the US, China, Taiwan and Malaysia and determined that there was actually dumping. It recommended anti-dumping duties ranging from $ 0.11 to $ 0.81 per watt.

It fell upon the new government at the Centre to take a call on it, in May 2014. But the government decided against imposing the duties, but told the domestic manufacturers not to worry, they would get enough business from the government-owned companies who would put up solar projects.

Published on September 29, 2015

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