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Tim Brightbill Discusses Solar Trade Case Against China

Bloomberg News; Greenwire
January 25, 2012

Tim Brightbill, a partner in Wiley Rein's International Trade Practice, was quoted by Bloomberg for a story on the antidumping and countervailing duties cases Wiley Rein LLP has filed on behalf of the U.S. solar industry against Chinese manufacturers of solar cells and panels.

Bloomberg reports that SolarWorld AG is seeking retroactive duties on Chinese solar panels after imports surged at the end of 2011, with suppliers trying to lock in sales before the Department of Commerce’s expected ruling in February that could impose stiff tariffs.  The article adds that “U.S. solar-equipment manufacturers say they are being harmed because China’s government uses cash grants, discounts on raw materials, preferential loans and tax incentives, and manipulates its currency to boost exports of solar cells.”

“The bottom line is there has been a huge surge at the end of the year, way out of proportion to demand, in an effort to beat the imposition of duties,” Mr. Brightbill said. “That’s why we’re urging Commerce to make what’s called a critical-circumstances finding and to impose the duties 90 days retroactively.”

Mr. Brightbill also spoke with Greenwire following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech, where the president underscored efforts to bring more World Trade Organization (WTO) cases against China  “Unfortunately those WTO cases also take a lot of effort both by government and the private industry,” said Mr. Brightbill.  “Hopefully this enforcement group can find creative ways of using the WTO process and the multilateral process to enforce our trade laws and to hold China and other countries accountable for trade law violations.”