MNRE likely to expand duty relief for domestic solar equipment industry

To boost domestic solar equipment manufacturing, the ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE) is planning to also include components under exemption from basic Customs duty (BCD). This comes after the ministry clarified that BCD over imported solar cells, modules, and panels will remain zero. 

“The MNRE has taken up with the finance ministry the issue of exemption of BCD on import of capital goods required for setting up manufacturing units of solar photovoltaic cells, modules, wafers, ingots, and polysilicon,” said a recent notice by the ministry.  

The move is in line with the Centre’s efforts to promote domestic solar manufacturing which faces stiff competition from imports, especially from China. Indian solar equipment manufacturers had in the past requested the Centre to clamp down imports and suggested the government to impose duties on the same. There is an existing 15 per cent safeguard duty on Chinese solar panels.

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