Imports of solar cells and modules are on the rise, with in-bound shipments surging over three times to Rs 15,523 crore in 2015-16 from Rs 5,051 crore in 2014-15, Parliament was informed today.
In April of the first quarter alone, the import of solar modules and cell stood at Rs 936 crore, New and Renewable Energy Minister Piyush Goyal said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.
The imports stood at Rs 4,317 crore in 2013-14.
“Manufacturers from the US, China and other countries are supplying solar cells and modules in India and in some cases, the price is much lower than what is being offered by domestic manufacturers,” Goyal said.
Because of international competition, the domestic manufacturers are impacted, he added.
On the government not imposing anti-dumping duty on such countries, the minister said: “Indian manufacturers gave in writing that they are not interested in continuing with the anti-dumping petition.”
Director General of Anti-Dumping and Allied Duties (DGAD) had recommended imposition of anti-dumping duty on imports of solar cells and modules from China, Chinese Taipei, Malaysia and the US in May 2014.
While the government is concerned about domestic manufacturers, it is also worried about the price of power which has to be borne by common users, he explained.
The government is providing support to domestic manufacturers through a provision of reserving some capacities for domestic cells and modules, which gives assured market to them, he said.
Besides, the present domestic manufacturing capacity will not be able to take care of the government’s yearly targets, he said, adding that the government has set a target of increasing solar power generation to 1 lakh mega watt by 2022 from 20,000 mw.