SolarWorld AG welcomes the decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce to impose a preliminary anti-subsidy customs duty on the import of massively subsidized Chinese solar power products. Depending on the manufacturer or exporter, the customs duties will amount to between 2.9 and 4.7 percent, the Department announced on Tuesday (local time). The products affected are Chinese solar power modules and cells based on crystalline silicon. Already before this announcement the Department had indicated that the customs duties will also apply retroactively to products that had been imported into the U.S. in the last 90 days before today’s announcement.
The preliminary anti-subsidy customs duties are just the first part of the upcoming customs decision. For May 16 the decision on antidumping customs duties is announced. Latter refer to a dumping margin established by a government agency. Such an antidumping customs duty would likely be imposed on top of the anti-subsidy customs duties announced now.
This decision provisionally grants a petition by the U.S. subsidiary of the German solar group SolarWorld against Chinese export subsidies. In addition to its production in Germany SolarWorld operates the largest production facility for solar power technology in the United States at its site in Hillsboro, Oregon and leads a group of U.S. manufacturers who are fighting unfair competition in the solar industry. Another petition is directed against price dumping by Chinese manufacturers. The Department of Commerce has announced that it will take a decision on an appropriate preliminary antidumping customs duty on May 16, 2012.
Gordon Brinser, president of SolarWorld Industries America: ”The U.S. government has recognized that China’s subsidies destroy the solar market and jeopardize jobs. The provisional anti-subsidy customs duties imposed now are a first step towards re-establishing fair competition in the United States.”