German minister calls EU move on China solar 'grave mistake'

BERLIN Sun May 19, 2013 8:44am EDT

Germany's Vice Chancellor and Free Democrats (FDP) party Chairman Philipp Roesler attends an extraordinary FDP Party meeting in Nuremberg May 4, 2013. REUTERS/Michael Dalder

Germany's Vice Chancellor and Free Democrats (FDP) party Chairman Philipp Roesler attends an extraordinary FDP Party meeting in Nuremberg May 4, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Michael Dalder

BERLIN (Reuters) - German Economy Minister Philipp Roesler said the European Commission made a "grave mistake" by agreeing to impose punitive import duties on solar panels from China and urged the Commission to work to prevent the eruption of a trade conflict.

"It's a grave mistake," Roesler told Welt am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday.

He said China already warned the duties on solar panels would harm bilateral trade. "That shows: punitive import duties are the wrong instrument."

Roesler told the Sunday newspaper that the German government has repeatedly warned of the consequences of punitive import duties against China's solar industry. Germany is one of the world's leading export nations.

"The German industry is very concerned and quite rightly," Roesler said. "I expect the Commission to do everything to prevent a trade conflict. The Commission has to seek a resolution with negotiations and dialogue instead of threats."

Germany's BDI industry association warned at the weekend about negative consequences for Germany's export-oriented industry of the Commission's move to impose average import duties of 47 percent on solar panels from China.

(Reporting by Ralf Bode and Soeren Amelang; Writing by Erik Kirschbaum; Editing by Thomas Krumenacker and Maria Sheahan)

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Comments (1)
probusnews wrote:
The United Kingdome Independence ( anti fascist EU) Party, love this sort of idiotic move on the part of the European golden trough gobbles committee in Brussels as it strengthens the case for getting out of the EU lunatic asylum. The import duties were levied to bolster the going bankrupt Eurozone German and Italian solar panel industry. The fact that the likes of the UK may be hit with the recriminations by the Chinese for some thing cooked up by Merkel is nothing short of a B***y disgrace and the sooner we get away from the Federal Brussels bandits the better. Next up the German led 11 Eurozone countries 4 of which have been bailed out, will push through a bill in the palace of Von Rompuy to ensure a financial transaction tax is foisted on none Eurozone members the proceeds from which will go in to a Eurozone bail out slush fund. British business will contribute more to the Eurozone slush fund than all other 26 members put together. UKIP once again thanks Chancellor Merkel for treating the Brits with total contempt. After the next EU elections when your MEP’s stand across the assembly from over 60 British UKIP members Merkel and her mangy French poodle may start to understand that the Brits signed up to a European trade and defence union and not to the precept of being governed by a Franco/German lead bribed Eastern European block. The British are not anti European we are close to being the second highest net contributor in to the EU pot. The polls in the UK now show that UKIP have 22% of the vote and rising, another 5% will see them pass the governments 27 % so keep taking the P^^^^ out of the British Germany and poodle because UKIP love it.

May 19, 2013 9:59pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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