The Ministry of Finance, which has approved the recommendations of DGTR for the 25% safeguard duty, is officially headed by Arun Jaitley who has been on a break owing to health reasons. In his absence, the ministry is being handled by Piyush Goyal, who previously led the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy and was a vocal proponent of supporting domestic manufacturing industry.y (Photo Credit: Press Information Bureau)
- Indian government’s Department of Revenue has published a brief notification in the Indian Gazette informing of the decision to impose 25% safeguard duty on imported solar cells from China and Malaysia
- 25% duty imposition comes into effect on July 30, 2018 and will remain in force till July 29, 2019
- Next year is divided into two periods of six months each when the duty will come down to 20% for the first six months and 15% for the second half
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After months of uncertainty and opposing lobbying activities of India’s solar product manufacturers and project developers, the country’s government has finally imposed safeguard duties on imported solar cells from China and Malaysia. A brief order was issued by the Ministry of Finance’s Department of Revenue. The notification has been published in the Indian Gazette.
In doing so, the department has accepted recommendations of the Directorate General of Trade Remedies to impose 25% safeguard duty on solar cells imported from China and Malaysia (see India Recommends 25% Safeguard Duty).
The duty will change over time:
- For the first year, between July 30, 2018 to July 29, 2019, 25% duty will be applicable.
- Between July 30, 2019 and January 29, 2020, it will reduce to 20%
- Final six months, from January 30, 2020 to July 29, 2020, it will come down to 15%.
All the duties mentioned above will be imposed ad valorem minus anti-dumping duty payable, if any when imported during the specified period, reads the gazette order.
This has come as a surprise since ACME Solar was reported by local media to have secured a temporary stay on the imposition of this duty till August 20, 2018 from the Orissa High Court.
Recently, India’s Solar Power Developers Association (SPDA) requested the government to completely exempt ongoing projects where bidding processes have completed, from the ambit of the safeguard duty. They feared 27 GW of PV capacity at stake with such a duty.