July 17 (Renewables Now) - India’s Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) has recommended the imposition of a 25% safeguard duty on solar cell imports from China and Malaysia for a one-year period, while demanding companies from other developing countries to be exempt from the levies.
The recommendation was made on Monday following an investigation that confirmed photovoltaic (PV) product imports cause or threaten to cause serious injury to domestic manufacturers in India. According to an official document, DGTR’s proposal envisages the duty to be 20% in the first six months of the second year and 15% in the next six half of the second year.
In its investigation, the umbrella authority indicates there is a “significant” increase in solar product imports into India, which has affected prices and caused serious injuries to the domestic solar industry. Meanwhile, it has found out that imports from other developing nations, apart from China and Malaysia, do not account for more than 3% of PV module and 9% of PV cell imports into India.
The safeguard duty recommendation comes in response to an application by the Indian Solar Manufacturers Association (ISMA) on behalf of five Indian PV makers that collectively produce more than 50% of all Indian-made solar cells. At the end of May, the Indian government decided not to impose a provisional safeguard duty on solar cell imports into India and overruled an earlier DGTR’s recommendation for a 70% tariff for 200 days, presented in early January.