EU AND CHINA TRY TO AVOID SOLAR TRADE WAR
European Union member states approved a plan to register solar panels from China as both parties move closer to punitive tariffs. Though EU officials are aware that Europe needs China and the solar market to recover its economy, they have accused China of "stonewalling" and have criticized the lack of clarity from Chinese leadership. The measure would also allow the EU to retroactively place duties on China and its companies if they are found to have sold panels below cost. In 2011, Chinese companies sold $27 billion worth of panels to Europe, accounting for around 60 percent of the nation's total exports of the product. The United States has already placed punitive duties on China's panels, and last year the EU launched two probes into Chinese solar practices. The EU's actions stem from a complaint from European solar companies that claim to have suffered harm due to cheap Chinese panels. Solar installers have warned that duties could cost up to 242,000 jobs. For the full story, see http://uk.reuters.com/article/2013/02/21/us-eu-china-trade-idUKBRE91K0J920130221 and http://www.smh.com.au/business/carbon-economy/eu-takes-step-to-curb-china-pv-imports-20130221-2esir.html. Earlier: http://elr.info/international/international-update/eu-may-impose-tariffs-chinese-solar-manufacturers, http://elr.info/international/international-update/china-probes-eu-solar-products.