ITC announces dates for duties decisions

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The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has announced the dates when it expects to make preliminary decisions over the anti-dumping (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) to be imposed upon the latest batch of imported Chinese solar products to be caught within the regime.

Having decided on Friday afternoon that its investigation into Chinese-made PV goods incorporating cells made in third-party countries had uncovered evidence of unfair practices, the ITC went on to reveal more details of the vote and the next stage of proceedings.

With commissioners Shara L. Aranoff and F. Scott Kieff not participating in the vote, there was a clean sweep of affirmative votes by chairman Irving A Williamson and commissioners Dean A Pinkert, David S Johanson and Meredith M Broadbent, who decided there was evidence such goods were being dumped in the U.S. at less than fair value and were allegedly benefiting from Chinese state subsidies.

The ITC announced on Friday night that a preliminary decision over what anti-dumping duties should be applied to such goods, if any, will be made ‘on or about’ March 26 and a countervailing duty decision is expected on June 9. It is believed any duties that are applied can be backdated for up to three months.

The investigation was launched after a complaint by the U.S. subsidiary of German solar manufacturer SolarWorld that Chinese PV manufacturers hit by duties applied by the U.S. authorities last year had found a workaround by switching cell manufacturing to Taiwan and other third-party countries before assembling modules in China.

U.S. solar trade body the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has proposed a compromise that would see Chinese manufacturers pay a proportion of the costs they are incurring as a result of moving cell manufacture overseas into a fund for U.S. manufacturers as well as joint R&D and solar market development, in return for all duties – including Chinese duties on U.S.-made polysilicon – being halted.