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Sturdy: EU solar panel duties reflect badly for the environment and the economy

4 June 2013

Sturdy: EU solar panel duties reflect badly for the environment and the economy

The EU’s decision to adopt duties on solar panels from China are a job-threatening mistake, Robert Sturdy MEP, European Conservatives and Reformists group trade spokesman and Vice-President of the European Parliament’s International Trade committee, said.

The EU’s decision to adopt duties on solar panels from China are a job-threatening mistake, Robert Sturdy MEP, European Conservatives and Reformists group trade spokesman and Vice-President of the European Parliament’s International Trade committee, said.

He believes that anti-dumping cases must always consider the wider interests of the EU, and in this case such duties will do far more harm than good, costing jobs, forcing up prices for consumers, running contrary to EU environmental policy, and damaging the trading relationship with China.

China exported solar panels and their components are worth around €21 billion to the EU. The EU responded to a complaint by an industry association called EU ProSun, which claimed that the solar panels from China were being ‘dumped’ (they were entering European markets at prices cheaper than their market value).

However, Mr Sturdy said:

“These duties are going to damage businesses that install solar panels, and force up prices for consumers.

“We are sending out very bad signals about our environmental commitment and our trading relationship with Asia.

“If the EU is to grow its economy then we need to put the wider picture ahead of parochial interests and make trade defence decisions based on the wider ramifications that they could have.”

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