Greentech Lead Asia: In response to the antidumping duties imposed by several countries including the U.S, China has issued preliminary anti-dumping duties on imports of U.S. and South Korean solar-grade polysilicon.
Beijing has slapped hefty duties of 53.3 to 57 percent on U.S. polysilicon and 2.4 percent to 48.7 percent on South Korean exports.
However, the country has not made a decision on tariffs on European Union exports of the raw material used to make solar panels. This is significant as both China and EU have locked horns over the alleged dumping of Chinese solar panels in Europe.
In June, the EU imposed punitive tariffs at 11.8 percent for two months, instead of an earlier plan for an immediate levy averaging 47 percent, resulting in a ray of hope for both companies.
Despite the negative sentiment prevailing in the region, in June German Chancellor Angela Merkel offered support to China’s Premier Li Keqiang saying she would do everything to avoid the anti-dumping tariff against Made in China solar panels. Recently the German Economy Ministry said that Beijing would levy no duties on EU polysilicon.
The solar imports dilemma has already hit the general trade between the two countries. China has threatened duties on European wine exports and experts feel the trade war will spread to other goods, including steel.
“The cause-and-effect relationship between the dumping of products from the United States and South Korea and harm to China’s domestic industry cannot be denied,” said a statement from the China Commerce Ministry.
U.S. subsidiaries of Renewable Energy Corp ASA will be among those hardest hit by the new ruling by Beijing. According to the sources in the ministry, importers are required to pay preliminary duties in deposits starting from July 24.
The ruling is expected to have an impact on the industry as more than 80 percent of the polysilicon used by Chinese panel makers in 2012 was supplied by the United States, Europe and South Korea.