Home / Energy/ Relief for Indian solar producers as government reneges on import duty

Relief for Indian solar producers as government reneges on import duty


Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Tuesday, 15 May 2018 00:00


NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India has scrapped a duty on solar modules, making it easier to import the products after a sudden change in customs policy last year led to a logjam of shipments at Indian ports.

Several consignments of solar modules, worth more than $150 million in total, were held up for more than three months at ports after Indian customs’ officials in August demanded that some of them be classified as “electric motors and generators”, carrying a 7.5% import duty. Previously they were subject to no duty.

The finance ministry reversed the policy last month, stating in a notice seen by Reuters that most solar modules should revert to their original classification and that no tax should be levied on them.

Indian component makers have struggled to compete with Chinese companies such as Trina Solar and Yingli and have sought anti-dumping duties as well as long-term safeguards.

But the logjam of shipments at ports posed a headache for solar power producers and threatened to delay Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s plan of nearly tripling the country’s total renewable energy capacity to 175 gigawatt (GW) by 2022.

The plan has spurred foreign investment in the sector, with Japan’s SoftBank and Goldman Sachs among others investing in solar projects in India.

Any duty is bad news for solar power producers such as SoftBank-backed SB Energy but good for local solar component makers such as Indosolar and Moser Baer.

The change in policy last August led to logjams as it was not immediately clear which modules belonged to the new classification. To ease the situation customs officials agreed to release shipments if importers paid a bank guarantee to cover any duty they may be required to pay.

An executive at the Indian unit of Germany’s Enerparc, which had 30 of its containers stuck at the port of Chennai, said there was still some uncertainty about the process even though the duty had been scrapped.

 


Share This Article


DISCLAIMER:

1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.

COMMENTS

Today's Columnists

Buddhism, sustainability and Sri Lanka

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Sustainability is fast becoming a very relevant and essential aspect of our lives. This has come about as a response to the high degree of consumerism that prevails in the world today, and the resulting overuse of fast-depleting natural resources, gi


The Hindu mess and N. Ram’s tweet on the raw (or RAW) matter

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

A.S. Panneerselvan ran a story this morning in The Hindu (00.00am, 22 October) titled ‘Don’t blame the messenger,’ referring to the controversial front page report of the same newspaper five days ago by Meera Sirinivasan on ‘Sri Lankan Presid


Can humans and animals coexist in increasingly limited spaces?

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Many wildlife species are close to extinction, or at least threatened, because of human impact. The usual strategies of co-existence are to confine more and more the habitat of wildlife to smaller reserves, parks or other fenced areas, to protect the


Reinvent yourself before reinventing your industry

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

For the last 19 years Interbrand has been carrying out its Best Global Brands report. This year, the theme of the study is ‘Activating Brave’, which examines the role that brand strength plays in the transformation of the world’s leading busi


Columnists More