EU Probes Chinese Solar Firms: Subsidy Law Test

Apr 4, 2024 11:35 AM ET
  • EU probes Chinese firms in bid for Romanian solar park to prevent unfair competition. Concerns over state support and impact on clean tech industries.

The European Union has launched investigations into Chinese firms bidding for a Romanian solar park, in an effort to prevent state-funded companies from unfairly competing with EU rivals. The probes target ENEVO Group and LONGi Solar Technologie GmbH, as well as state-owned Shanghai Electric UK Co. Ltd. and Shanghai Electric Hong Kong International Engineering Co. Ltd. The EU is concerned about Chinese companies undercutting its clean tech industries with state support, and is considering additional tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles.

EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton emphasized the strategic importance of solar panels for Europe's clean energy production, jobs, and security of supply. The investigations aim to protect Europe's economic security and competitiveness, as the EU solar industry struggles against cheap Chinese imports. The EU is cautious about trade defensive measures that could impact its emissions reduction targets.

These investigations mark the second instance of the EU's foreign subsidies regulation being used, following a Chinese company withdrawing from a Bulgarian railway tender under similar scrutiny. The China Chamber of Commerce to the EU expressed grave concerns about the investigations, arguing that the regulation unfairly burdens and discriminates against Chinese enterprises operating in the EU.

Are Chinese firms unfairly competing in EU solar industry?

  • The European Union has launched investigations into Chinese firms bidding for a Romanian solar park, in an effort to prevent state-funded companies from unfairly competing with EU rivals.
  • The probes target ENEVO Group and LONGi Solar Technologie GmbH, as well as state-owned Shanghai Electric UK Co. Ltd. and Shanghai Electric Hong Kong International Engineering Co. Ltd.
  • The EU is concerned about Chinese companies undercutting its clean tech industries with state support, and is considering additional tariffs on Chinese electric vehicles.
  • EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton emphasized the strategic importance of solar panels for Europe's clean energy production, jobs, and security of supply.
  • The investigations aim to protect Europe's economic security and competitiveness, as the EU solar industry struggles against cheap Chinese imports.
  • The EU is cautious about trade defensive measures that could impact its emissions reduction targets.
  • These investigations mark the second instance of the EU's foreign subsidies regulation being used, following a Chinese company withdrawing from a Bulgarian railway tender under similar scrutiny.
  • The China Chamber of Commerce to the EU expressed grave concerns about the investigations, arguing that the regulation unfairly burdens and discriminates against Chinese enterprises operating in the EU.
Source:
bloomberg.com

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