EC Investigates Chinese Solar Glass Imports, Dumping Allegations

The European Commission (EC) has begun an anti-dumping investigation into imports of solar glass from China. The investigation stems from a complaint filed by EU ProSun Glass, a Belgium-based group of European solar glass manufacturers, which claims solar glass from China is being dumped in the European Union (EU) at prices below market value and causing material injury to the EU solar glass industry.

EU ProSun Glass filed its complaint on January 15.

In a statement issued shortly before the EC announcement, EU ProSun Glass alleges that “nearly 90 percent of imported solar glass comes from China, with European jobs and factories being heavily affected by destructive dumping.”

As part of its decision to investigate, the EC has reviewed the complaint and agency officials say they have found that the complaint shows:

(1) Possible price dumping by the exporting producers on the EU market;

(2) Injury suffered by the industry; and

(3) A possible causal link between the dumped imports and the injury suffered by the industry.

According to information from the EC, the investigation could take up to 15 months, although provisional anti-dumping duties could be imposed within nine months if deemed necessary.

The EC now will send out questionnaires to various interested parties, such as exporting producers, EU producers, importers and associations. In the questionnaires, the EC will ask for information relating to the exports, production, sales and imports of solar glass. Once the interested parties have responded to the questionnaires, the EC will verify the data and will even visit some of the companies that have responded to the request.

Once the information has been collected and verified, the EC will establish if dumping has taken place and whether the injury claimed is a result of the dumped imports. The agency also will look at other possible factors that might have contributed to the alleged injury, according to an announcement from the EC.

In addition, the EC will carry out the “Union interest test,” during which it will consider “whether the potential imposition of measures would be more costly to the EU economy as a whole than the benefit of the measures would be to the complainants.”

The EC also will assess the level of duty needed to counteract the effects of the alleged dumping.

Within nine months of the start of the investigation, EC officials say they will issue their provisional findings. At that time, one of the following three things will happen. The EC will:

(1) Impose provisional anti-dumping duties (normally for a six months period);

(2) Continue the investigation without imposing provisional duties; or

(3) Terminate the investigation.

The final decision on the case will be made before May 28, 2014.

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