India might impose anti-dumping duty on four major importers of solar cells and modules in the country after listening to the grievances of domestic manufacturers. Local producers have filed a case last year, alleging that countries such as the US, China, Malaysia and Taiwan were exporting solar equipment to India at “ridiculously low prices” which was “bleeding the local industry”.
“It is a complex case with over 100 companies involved. An initial hearing is scheduled for July 18 to understand the case better. We will start the investigations once the preliminary hearing is over,” a commerce ministry official told ET. With cheap imports flooding the domestic solar market, major players in the Indian solar business have either shut down their manufacturing facilities— like Moser Baer—or have idled their capacity by more than 50%—like Lanco and Indosolar.
“There’s sufficient prima facie evidence of ‘injury’ being suffered by the domestic industry caused by dumped imports from the subject countries to justify initiation of an anti-dumping investigation,” said the case initiation notification by the Directorate General of Anti-Dumping, ministry of commerce, in November last year.
“There’s an over capacity of solar cells globally due to over production by countries like China, which are also dumping at prices below our cost of production,” said HR Gupta, managing director, Indosolar Ltd, one of the complainants in the antidumping case.
These players also rue the fact that while the investigation was on, no interim duty was imposed on the importers, which virtually decimated the Indian solar manufacturing industry. Last year, the US imposed 31% antidumping duty on Chinese solar imports, going as high as 250% for some companies. US manufacturers had alleged that Chinese products were eating into their local market.
Recently, even the EU imposed provisional anti-dumping duty of an average 47.6% on Chinese solar imports.
Courtesy: The Economic Times, Jul 3, 2013