According to reports, India is likely to impose a heavy anti-dumping duty on solar energy cells being imported from the US, China, Taiwan and Malaysia.
A commerce ministry inquiry has concluded the imports are undercutting the prices of domestic industry, with underselling, suppression and price depression effects.
The ministry has identified 58 manufacturers, mostly from China, followed by Taiwan, Malaysia and the US. The anti-dumping duty would need to be notified by the Central Board of Excise and Customs.
It has identified a dumping margin range of 50-60% from the US and 100-110% from China. There is a dumping margin seen of 60-70% for sampled manufacturers from China and 100-110% for the non-sampled, indicating an unorganised market of imports from China.
The dumping margin for First Solar, a US-based solar cell manufacturer, has been kept at five to 15% and for all other exporters at 40-50%. For Malaysia and Taiwan, the ministry determined the margin at 70% and 90%, respectively.
Though the move is likely to increase the generation costs for solar power generation, H R Gupta, managing director, Indosolar Ltd and member, Indian Solar Manufacturers Association, said: “The findings of the investigation by the directorate general of anti-dumping and allied duties should be respected. The Indian manufacturers have been bleeding and such a step will only ensure fair business opportunities to all.”
Data after being compiled and analysed by the US, European Union and India have shown similar results, he said.
Solar power producers, however, opposed the move, stating anti-dumping duties would have a major adverse impact on the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM). A total of 3,500 Mw of solar power projects have been tendered out by various agencies in the country and there was no provision to absorb the increase in cost from anti-dumping duties, it has said.
Sources say the ministry of new and renewable energy has also opposed imposition of anti-dumping duty.
Under the first batch of the second phase of JNNSM, power producers are required to meet the domestic content requirement. The US has taken India to the World Trade Organisation for this clause, which seeks to incentivise domestic manufacturers. India has a cell manufacturing capacity of 1,212 Mw. Moser Bayer, XL Energy, Tata Solar and Bharat Heavy Electrica;s are among the prominent ones.