EPIA, the European PV industry associaztion, has recently taken a decision to support free trade in all solar products. In light of this EPIA announces its support for a quick conclusion to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) agreement on liberalising trade in environmental goods and services. These current negotiations “present a great opportunity for tariffs on solar products to be significantly reduced. This would undoubtedly spur growth in the solar industry across the world.
Trade liberalisation would enable a price reduction of environmental goods, including solar products, increasing the demand and thus stimulating business opportunities for solar companies all over the value chain and all over the globe”.
In relation to this EPIA also supports free and fair trade between bilateral trading partners. EPIA believes that where parties raise concerns over trade practices, negotiated agreements to trade disputes between partners are the most effective way of supporting free trade. “Mutually agreed settlements are much more efficient than punitive tariff introduction, which can lead to market contraction in solar products”. EPIA believes that trade disputes and punitive tariffs are not in the interest of the European solar industry and are not the right way to go for ensuring growth in the solar sector.
While uncertainty remains on what could come after the end to the price undertaking in Europe, EPIA supports global industry cooperation and dialogue in relation to trade, as “it is the only viable solution for the growth of the solar industry here in Europe and globally. Solar electricity is becoming mainstream in many regions of the world, but its huge development potential can only be fully realised if all trade partners work together”.