MEP criticizes EU solar decision

Updated: 2013-06-07 13:52


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BRUSSELS -- A member of the European Parliament on Thursday criticized the decision by the European Commission to impose punitive duties on Chinese solar panels.

"I deplore this decision and the failure to continue negotiations to find a solution suitable for both parties," said MEP Helmut Scholz, also the European Parliament's Standing Rapporteur on EU-China Trade Relations.

The statement came two days after the European Commission decided to impose provisional anti-dumping duties on imports of solar panels, cells and wafers from China.

Starting from Thursday, European Union imports of Chinese solar products would be subject to a punitive duty of 11.8 percent until August 6, from when on, the duty will be raised to 47.6 percent.

The price increases for solar panels will affect public procurement bills of communities in many EU member states and will "slow down Europe's efforts to install higher renewable energy capacities," Scholz said in the statement.

The decision would also negatively impact EU exports in the respective supply industries, in particular the chemical industry and a high number of the mostly small and medium enterprises involved in the installation of solar panels, said Scholz, citing his own analysis.

Even the limited duties of 11.8 percent during the first two months will be perceived as an attempt to threaten the partner and will not be supportive for the start of negotiations on further cooperation, he said.