400 companies lead calls for an end to MIP

Anti-minimum import price sentiment has continued to swell this week as more than 400 companies called on the European Commission to put an end to trade duties on solar modules and cells.

The intensifying of lobbying against trade duties attached to solar components comes just as the EC expiry review of the tariffs is drawing to a close, with a verdict expected sometime before the March 2017 deadline.

A total of 403 companies from 28 separate member states have co-signed a statement which claimed that the measures are having an “unforeseen consequence of negatively impacting the entire European solar value chain”, impacting on jobs, investment and solar deployment across the continent.

Various UK-based solar developers, manufacturers and suppliers are included in the letter, including the likes of Solarcentury, Solarsense, Poweri, Photon Energy, Octopus and Larkfleet.

“A policy that was designed to help the few has failed to do so, only serving to harm the very many right across the EU.

“To return sustainable growth to our sector, to see jobs come back to our companies and to see the value of solar grow in Europe again, the trade measures must go.

“We call on you to make a responsible decision and act in the interest of the European Union and end the trade measures on solar modules and cells immediately,” the statement reads.

The MIP has come under increasing pressure and scrutiny of late with a number of fresh withdrawals from the undertaking. Last month saw both JinkoSolar and JA Solar exit the agreement voluntarily.

Those developments followed a raft of other exits which led SolarPower Europe to conclude that the MIP was “becoming obsolete”.

Meanwhile pro-MIP campaign group EU ProSun last month lashed out at China and Chinese module manufacturers after German module manufacturer SolarWorld, which established the group, made 500 temporary workers redundant, a decision which it squared solely with the “fudging and cheating” by Chinese manufacturers to circumvent the anti-dumping measures.