EC officially launches solar glass anti-dumping investigation

01. March 2013 | Global PV markets, Industry & Suppliers, Markets & Trends, Trade cases | By:  Becky Beetz

The European Commission (EC) has officially launched an anti-dumping investigation into imports of solar glass from China into the EU. Provisional duties could be imposed within nine months, while the investigation could take up to 15 months to complete.

Solar glass

The European glass industry is said to be valued at less than €200 million.

EU ProSun Glass, led by GMB Glasmanufaktur Brandenburg GmbH, filed an anti-dumping complaint with the EC on January 15.  It was said to represent 50% of European solar glass production.

A spokesperson for the initiative told pv magazine at the time that Chinese exports of solar glass to Europe have "drastically" increased in the last six months. Meanwhile, price decreases have been "incredible". They added that in the last year, Chinese manufacturers have lowered their solar glass price by between 20 and 30%. Meanwhile, their European market share has increased from 7 to 27% since 2010.

In a statement issued yesterday, February 28, the EC stated that while the entire investigation could take up to 15 months to complete, provisional anti-dumping duties could be applied within nine months. It added that the European glass industry is valued at less than €200 million.

Responding to media rumors regarding an anti-subsidy complaint against solar glass from China, the EC said it has not yet received such a compliant.

Based on the complaint lodged by EU ProSun Glass, which is not said to be linked to EU ProSun, the EC found that "sufficient elements" showing possible price dumping, injury suffered by the EU, and a possible causal link between the two were provided, thus justifying the launch of the official investigation.  

The EC has launched similar anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations against imports of photovoltaic modules into the EU from China. A provisional decision on anti-dumping tariffs is expected to be made by this June. Meanwhile, it was announced last week that Chinese modules will likely have to register with European customs from this March. 

By having imports registered, any provisional duties that are imposed can be retroactively applied to March (i.e. 90 days prior to the application of provisional duties). The aim is to stop importers bulk buying modules before any duties are applied.

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