(CN) – The European General Court on Tuesday upheld duties imposed on imports of solar panels from China, stemming from a regulatory investigation that found companies were selling panels at far below market prices while also receiving illegal subsidies.
An investigation carried out by the European Commission in 2012 and 2013 led to EU lawmakers imposing both anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties on imports of solar panels and components from China. Twenty-six of the affected companies sued, claiming the duties – which averaged 47.7 percent – are excessive.
In a flurry of rulings issued Tuesday, the Luxembourg-based general court rejected the companies’ claims that lawmakers imposed the duties in error. Specifically, the court found lawmakers properly considered solar panels made in other nations but consigned to the Chinese companies to be Chinese products given the origin of export was China.
Furthermore, the court ruled the duty rate does not exceed the amount necessary to remedy the injury to European manufacturers caused by the dumped products. In fact, lawmakers took a long look at other players in the industry – including Taiwan – raw materials prices and even the effects the 2008 financial crisis had on the industry before imposing the duties.
“Those factors were not the source of any significant injury that the institutions would have had to ensure were not attributed to the imports examined,” the court wrote.
The Chinese companies have 60 days to lodge an appeal with the European Court of Justice.