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India probing dumping of solar cells from China, Malaysia

According to reports, India has launched a probe into the alleged dumping of solar cells from China, Taiwan and Malaysia. The aim of this probe is to guard domestic players from below-cost imports. An application for investigation into this issue was filed by the Indian Solar Manufacturers Association.

The Commerce Ministry’s investigation arm — Directorate General of Antidumping and Allied Duties (DGAD) — has found prima facie evidence of dumping of ‘solar cells whether or not assembled partially or fully in modules or panels or on glass or some other suitable substrates’ by these countries.

If it is established that the dumping of solar cells has caused material injury to domestic players, the DGAD would recommend the imposition of anti-dumping duty on the import of the product. This duty is levied to provide a level playing field to local industry by guarding against cheap below-cost imports.

The DGAD is said to have initiated “an investigation into the alleged dumping, and consequent injury to the domestic industry”.

This investigation covers a period of 15 months from April 2016 to June 2017. However, the period for the injury investigation will also cover the data of 2013-16.

The imposition of anti-dumping duty is permissible under the World Trade Organisation (WTO) regime. Both India and China are members of the Geneva-based body.

It is to be noted that the DGAD is probing allegation of the dumping of several other products (especially certain chemicals and steel products) from China and other countries. Increasing imports and dumping of goods from China have always been an area of concern for Indian companies. India’s exports to China were only USD 10.2 billion in 2016-17 but imports aggregated USD 61.3 billion.

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