China Reaches Deal with EU to End Solar Panel Dumping Dispute

Chinese solar panel producers have reached an agreement with the European Union to settle a months-long dispute over charges of dumping of their products on European markets. A minimum price of 56 euro cents per watt will be the base price of future imports. Any exporter who decides not to abide by it will be charged the EU’s antidumping tariff of 47.6 percent. EU solar panel producers have complained that Chinese overproduction has resulted in a flood of discounted product that undermines their domestic industry. China owns 80 percent of the European market; exports were worth $27B in 2011. There are concerns that a large backlog of Chinese solar panels, currently selling for as low as 30 cents per watt, could enter the U.S. market. While averting a trade war, the Chinese-European agreement does not conclude a global contract. Watch for the friction over this issue to move to the U.S. trade arena.

John Howell, Editorial Director