US supports rapid deployment of solar energy in India: official

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Washington, Sept 3:  The US strongly supports rapid deployment of solar energy around the world, including in India and will continue to work to ensure that the best products and technologies are available to global consumers, an American Trade Representative official has said.

"In line with the numerous actions President Obama has taken to advocate for clean energy at home and abroad, the US strongly supports the rapid deployment of solar energy around the world, including in India," Andrew Bates, spokesman US Trade Representatives told PTI on Thursday.

US supports solar deployment in India

"The US will continue to work to ensure that the best products and technologies are available to global consumers regardless of the country of origin," Bates said in response to a question on the reported ruling by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on America's complaints against India's solar policy.

He said the WTO had not yet announced the outcome of the enforcement case that the United States brought against India based on "discriminatory policies" in the solar energy sector.

According to multiple media reports coming from Geneva, WTO is reported to have ruled in favour of the US over protection for local crystalline silicon and thin-film solar cells. In February last year, the US had dragged India to the WTO against New Delhi's domestic content requirement.

President Obama has taken to advocate for clean energy at home and abroad

"These domestic content requirements discriminate against US exports by requiring solar power developers to use India- manufactured equipment instead of US equipment.

These unfair requirements are against WTO rules, and we are standing up today for the rights of American workers and businesses," US Trade Representative Michael Froman had told reporters then.

In its ruling, which is officially not out yet, the WTO is reported to have said that India's domestic content requirements under its solar power programme were inconsistent with the international norms. India will now appeal against the ruling of WTO's dispute panel in the next two months, an official said.

PTI

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