German Environment Ministry seeks solar subsidy compromise

14. May 2012 | Top News, Global PV markets, Industry & Suppliers | By:  Sandra Enkhardt

Additional funding for photovoltaics research and development should move the German states to a "yes" regarding the country’s EEG, or renewable energy law. Saxony-Anhalt’s Minister President believes an agreement on Germany’s solar subsidies will be reached by the summer.

SolarWorld production

There are proposals to inject €30 million in Germany's photovoltaic sector.

The Environment Ministry in Berlin is searching for a quick solution to Germany’s solar subsidy conundrum, which the federal states can live with. The Parliamentary State Secretary of the Federal Ministry of the Environment, Katharina Reiche, also of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), has said €30 million should be made available in the form of federal funding for photovoltaics research and development. 

Thus, the Ministry would reach a compromise in the mediation committee, which the Bundesrat (Federal Council) called for on Friday, and which stopped the government’s EEG proposals, reports Germany’s Mitteldeutsche Zeitung. Following this, Reiche said the economic situation of Germany’s photovoltaic companies was not good; successful are the companies that export and are innovative.

CDU Minister President of Saxony-Anhalt, Reiner Haseloff was also confident that the new solar subsidy rules would be in place by this summer. He told German news agency, dpa that the demands from the solar industry for a return to the differentiated subsidy classes would be taken into account. A quick solution is also important to allow photovoltaic companies planning security for the coming years, he said. Therefore, the law is urgently needed.

At the Bundesrat on Friday, two thirds voted against the EEG, which the Bundestag (parliament) had already adopted in late March. This broad rejection by the different states had not been expected.

Translated by Becky Stuart.

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