India has finally decided not to impose anti-dumping duties on imported solar PV modules. With this, the country will not have to face the ire of the WTO where a case was filed by the US against India’s decision to impose anti-dumping duties. First Solar, a US based company had even approached the Delhi High court for a ruling against the decision which refused to intervene as the matter wasn’t decided.
The rejection which finally came from the Ministry of Finance is a blow to India manufacturing companies that claimed unfair business practices and loss of profits.
What is an anti dumping duty?
Domestic governments impose such a duty when there is sufficient reason to believe that the imports reaching a country have been deliberately priced below their market value and this is affecting the local industry. This is done to protect domestic industry and save jobs which otherwise may have to shut shop because they cannot compete with the imported low priced products. The US will be closely watching the decision of Indian commerce ministry to impose anti-dumping duties. Read more here.
Ministry of Commerce earlier had proposed to levy duties on PV’s coming from US, China, Malaysia and Taiwan. Read more here. The move was also not supported by MNRE, the nodal agency for renewable energy technologies in India.
National Solar Mission of India with its ambitious solar power targets has relied on solar imports and prices of solar produced power has been reducing in the country. This seems to be a progressive step in continuing the support for solar power projects to help them reach conventional power prices.
However, the domestic industry does have some degree of support because around 375 MW of projects are placed under domestic content scheme where the developers have to use locally manufactured products. This move also had been contested by the US in the WTO.