The Indian Ministry of Trade and Commerce has concluded its solar anti-dumping investigations and has recommended imposition of anti-dumping duties on solar cell imports from China, the United States, Malaysia, and Taiwan. This by no means is a “done deal” as this recommendation now moves to the Ministry of Finance, which has to make the final decision. It will be imperative that the Ministry of Finance decides on this sooner than later as project development in India will likely remain frozen until there is absolute clarity around the issue.
The recommended tariffs range from $0.11 to $0.81 per watt. It has been noted that the Ministry of Finance almost always accepts such recommendations, but this is an extraordinary situation that overlaps two administrations each with different views about support for solar. This is a big test for the new Modi administration, which has said the right things about its support for solar during election campaigning, but now will be under enormous pressure to make the right call. As we mentioned in last week’s update, for a sector that hasn’t grown a lot since 2012, imposition of an anti-dumping duty will be disastrous, and will increase uncertainty, and raise solar power prices.
Raj Prabhu is a recognized thought leader in clean energy markets where his work has influenced policies worldwide. He has a deep understanding of regulatory policy and clean energy markets and his market and opinion pieces are regularly published on both MercomIndia.com and other leading publications globally. Raj is also a regular speaker and presenter on clean energy policy and finance topics at conferences worldwide. Raj attended the KLE College of Science in Bangalore, India for physics and chemistry, and holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Hotel and Institutional Management from Johnson and Wales University, Rhode Island. More articles from Raj Prabhu.