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People's Daily Online>>China Business

Tariffs on solar panels 'will harm US industry'

By Richard Fu (Shanghai Daily)

08:26, March 22, 2012

A CHINESE industry group has hit out at a US decision to impose tariffs on solar panels imported from China.

On Tuesday, the United States Commerce Department said it had found that Chinese solar panel makers had received government subsidies of 2.9 to 4.73 percent. Therefore, import tariffs in the same proportions would be charged on Chinese panels, depending on the company making them.

The China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery and Electronic Products said the ruling was unfair and in contravention of international trade laws.

"Chinese solar panel makers firmly believe that their commercial success resulted from fair competition rather than unfair trade practices and violations to WTO rules," it said.

The chamber warned that imposing more duties on Chinese solar panel products will undermine the development of the global solar panel market, and do more harm than good in the US.

Setting trade barriers on Chinese solar panel manufacturers will increase costs of the US solar power production and dampen the market, thus ruining the US government's plan to boost employment by expanding solar power, it said.

The restriction will only benefit SolarWorld, the solar panel company that led US complaints, but will postpone large-scale development of the US solar power industry by at least five years, the chamber said.

Chinese solar panel makers have received far less government support than their American and European competitors, and all Chinese government support is in line with WTO rules, it said.

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