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Solar gear companies take Rs 1,000 crore hit

According to reports, amid ongoing trade battle with the US over domestic content clause in solar projects, manufacturers of PV (photo-voltaic) panels have said they were losing Rs 1,000 crore worth of business annually and suffering job losses due to dumping by US, China, Taiwan and Malaysia.

Indian Solar Manufacturers’ Association, the apex industry body representing 25 companies, on Wednesday demanded 30-35% anti-dumping duty on imports from these countries “at ridiculously low prices” in violation of international fair trade regulations.

The government recently said solar projects must use at least 15% of locally manufactured equipment, stoking US trade ire. US and EU too insist on domestic equipment and recently imposed anti-dumping duty on Chinese panels.

In January 2013, the commerce ministry issued a gazette notification for launch of anti-dumping investigations on imports from these countries.

ISMA also debunked criticism from project developers over quality of Indian-made panels. The association said Indian solar cells and modules are compliant with German-certified IEC specs and calibrated in German laboratories.

“India has been supplying cells and modules to all major countries in Europe and Japan who have by far the most stringent quality standards and has found a ready market in these discerning countries,” ISMA said in a statement.

The industry body also argued that countries in the EU and the West Asia, the US, China and South Africa require locally manufactured equipment to be used in solar farms, ensuring energy security and employment to their countrymen.

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