MoP at odds with proposal of Commerce Ministry on imposing solar duties

Power minister Mr. Piyush Goyal has reportedly given a statement which goes against the proposal of Ministry of Commerce to impose solar duties on imported equipments. An article in Bloomberg says that as per Mr. Goyal, solar duties will undermine PM’s vision of fostering solar generation in the country. He adds that India currently doesn’t have adequate solar manufacturing capacity to catch up with national targets. India’s transport minister Mr. Nitin Gadkari also holds same views.

The decision must have brought a lot of cheer to lobby and industry associations striving hard against imposition of such duties. A background of the case is detailed below –

Background –

Directorate general of anti-dumping & allied duties (DGAD) under Ministry of commerce and Industry had recommended to impose steep anti-dumping duties on import of solar products like US, China, Malaysia, Taiwan etc. By such levy of duties, DGAD wants to secure favourable market condition for domestic solar manufacturing cos. The DGAD has recognized that despite huge potential of manufacturing, India has negligible capacity operational.  To bolster the fate of Indian solar equipment manufacturers, India had introduced DCR in NSM, but following a dispute with US at WTO, some other means to check dumping was required.

Although DGAD paid heed to complaints raised by Indian manufacturing association, many solar experts across India fear that imposing of such duties is going to adversely affect the growth of solar sector in India.  Intense lobbying against such a decision has been observed. MNRE is also voting against imposing anti-dumping duties.

It is expected that anti-dumping duties are going to make projects selected under open category of NSM also unviable. On the flip side, Indian manufacturing still lags on technological front and the quality of products domestically manufactured is inferior to their imported counterparts. Solar power developers argue that both quality and price is going to be affected if the Min. of Commerce & Industry favours levy of anti-dumping charges.

Recent media articles can be accessed –

PV Tech

Hindu Businessline 

Moneycontrol

Economic Times

75% local content in JNNSM 2nd Phase – MNRE

Against the backdrop of the recent episode in which the United States dragged India in World Trade Organization (WTO) for local content requirement in JNNSM Ist phase, the ministry of new and renewable energy has come out with a bold step to incorporate 75 % local content in phase 2 of its solar scheme. Mr. Farooq Abdullah said – “We want to encourage domestic industry also. The bidding would start in the coming month”, giving signs that India is still keen in developing local green manufacturing market and expecting that WTO will turn US’s allegation in its favor.

Another important statement given with respect to the fledgling wind energy market in India was to reinstate the withdrawn accelerated depreciation mechanism. Hon’ble minister was spotted saying that the proposal for reinstatement would be taken up to the cabinet and the same will be pushed. He also asserted that MNRE has taken cognizance of the predicament of investments in wind energy and how the same is affecting the small and medium scale enterprises, which house a high capacity of captive wind power in the nation. Our blog-post on petition filed by IWPA recently can be assessed here.

Relevant media articles –

The Hindu 

EFY Times

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