US imposes lower than expected 2.9- 4.73pc tariffs on China solar panels

2012 03 23

THE US has imposed lower than expected tariffs - between 2.9-4.73 per cent - on China solar panel exports, arguing that manufacturers received unfair subsidies, reports London's Financial Times.

Reuters reported that analysts had expected duties of 20-30 per cent with Joe Osha, of Bank of America, warning that the benefits to US manufacturers may be short-lived and lead to lower demand for US solar energy products.

The US Commerce Department set 2.9 per cent duties on Suntech cells and 4.73 per cent tariffs on Trina Solar panels and 3.61 per cent duties for all other Chinese solar manufacturers.

The low duty rate seemed to satisfy both sides in a US election year, with each ready to blame China for American economic troubles, calling for tariffs and others warning about the damage they may cause.

Peng Fang, chief executive of China's JA Solar, warned investors of the negative impact this trade dispute could have on the company, saying the "increase of tariffs will disrupt trade with China into 2013."

Chinese solar makers have begun to shift production outside the country in an effort to head off duties, though tariffs may target companies that have their operations, rather than production, based in China.

The US Commerce Department also set large punitive tariffs on steel wheels from China on Monday, stating that Chinese producers sold products at 45-194 per cent below fair value. The department will make final duty decisions on galvanised steel wire and optical brightening agents.

Source Shipping Gazette - Daily Shipping News

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