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Most EU states oppose Chinese solar panel duties: Diplomats

Published on May 27, 2013 8:17 PM
 
Employees work on a solar panel production line at Suntech Power Holdings headquarters in Wuxi, Jiangsu province on April 3, 2013. A majority of European Union (EU) governments oppose the European Commission's plans to levy prohibitive duties on solar panel imports from China, a survey of member states by Reuters showed on Monday, May 27, 2013, weakening Brussels' efforts to pressure Beijing. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

BRUSSELS (REUTERS) - A majority of European Union (EU) governments oppose the European Commission's plans to levy prohibitive duties on solar panel imports from China, a survey of member states by Reuters showed on Monday, weakening Brussels' efforts to pressure Beijing.

The European Commission is set to impose duties averaging 47 per cent in place from June 6, but the sanctions are provisional and EU trade chief Karel De Gucht is seeking a negotiated solution with the Chinese government.

The EU's 27 countries had until Friday to submit a written response to chief De Gucht's plans to go ahead with the duties, in a non-binding vote that nonetheless has a strong bearing on the Commission's room for manoeuvre.

Fearful of losing business in China, Germany, Britain and the Netherlands are among a group of at least 14 member states who oppose the measures, diplomats told Reuters during a survey of countries' positions.

 
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