The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has ruled that its investigation into anti-dumping and countervailing duties for solar cell products from China and Taiwan will move forward. The announcement was made public following a preliminary phase vote in Washington, DC.
The anti-dumping and countervailing duty on solar cells issue stems from a compliant initiated by Frank Asbeck and his company SolarWorld back in 2013. This was the second complaint brought against Taiwan and China by SolarWorld accusing solar manufacturing companies of anti-dumping practices with the first complaint focused on solar cells produced in China that Asbeck argued was negatively affecting PV cell competition of U.S. manufacturers. The second complaint centered on the alleged practices of companies getting around the duties attached to PV cells produced in China by circumventing the system through the production of PV cells in Taiwan.
In response to the ruling, Jigar Shah, president of the Coalition for Affordable Solar Energy (CASE), said, “With the ITC’s preliminary ruling in favor of SolarWorld’s petition to impose tariffs on imported solar products, it is now official: a German company is one step closer to manipulating U.S. trade procedure in order to prop up its own failing business and inflict harm on a job-creating industry. By raising the cost of solar for American homeowners, SolarWorld is poised to inflict critical damage on an industry which last year added more than 20,000 solar installation, sales, and distribution jobs to the U.S. economy.”
“These hard-working Americans now look to President Obama to broker a common sense solution which will avoid damage to the economy and allow the deployment of clean renewable energy to continue into the 21st Century,” continued Shah.
He concluded, “Just this past week, the U.S. Trade Representative publicly condemned the protectionist solar policies of India because, in his words, protectionist policies would ‘actually impede India’s deployment of solar energy by raising its cost.’ CASE implores the U.S. government to adopt the same perspective before a burgeoning U.S. industry is harmed for the benefit of one German company.”