China extends probe into EU polysilicon imports by six months


China’s Commerce Ministry (Mofcom) today announced that it is to extend its anti dumping and anti subsidy probes into European polysilicon imports for six months, citing the "comparative specificity and complexity" of the case.

The decision comes as EU member states are next month expected to rubber-stamp a trade deal negotiated in July between the two blocs which saw Chinese manufacturers agree to a minimum price for Chinese-made wafers, cells and modules to stave off anti dumping duties.

A separate EU anti subsidy enquiry into Chinese-made solar products is ongoing and its recommendations – expected to be announced at the same time as anti dumping trade deal resolution – could be the reason China has opted to postpone its decision on polysilicon.

An announcement on the Mofcom website today stated: "In accordance with the provisions of the regulations of the People’s Republic of China on anti-dumping, the Ministry of Commerce issued annual announcement No. 71, on November 1, 2012, deciding to initiate anti-dumping investigations against imports of pyridine originated in the EU. In consideration of the comparative specificity and complexity of this case, the Ministry of Commerce has decided, in accordance with the provisions of Article 26 of the regulations of the People’s Republic of China on anti-dumping, to extend the investigation period of this case by six months, i.e. the deadline of the investigation will be May 1, 2014."

An announcement relating to the anti subsidy investigation simply substitutes the word anti-subsidy for anti dumping.

After the EU made the decision to impose anti-dumping duties on panels made in China, with the American market following suit, China pressed ahead with the imposition of duties on polysilicon from the U.S. and South Korea, although due to wider ongoing trade disputes with the EU at the time, did not make a decision on whether to extend these duties to polysilicon from Europe.

Mofcom translation by Wenjing Feng.