China probes European wine industry

June 5, 2013 at 9:31 AM
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BEIJING, June 5 (UPI) -- The Chinese government is tasked with investigating wine imported from producers in the European Union, the Ministry of Commerce said Wednesday.

Chinese wine producers said their European rivals have an unfair advantage through government subsidies, damaging the Chinese wine industry. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce decided Wednesday to investigate the issue, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

The investigation of wine imports follows a decision by the European Union to introduce import duties on Chinese solar panels. Chinese Commerce Ministry spokesman Shen Danyang said the government opposes the measure.

The European Commission has launched at least two investigations into alleged dumping of solar panel components like solar glass sold in the EU by Chinese manufacturers. The commission said in a statement Tuesday it would set the duty on imports to 47.6 percent starting in August, "which is the level required to remove the harm caused by the dumping to the European industry."

The commission said it was ready to discuss the issue with Chinese exporters.

The ministry spokesman said the Chinese government was anticipating some flexibility from the European government on the issue and looks forward to discussing the issue of prices, Xinhua reported.

Chinese-manufactured solar products account for more than half of the global market and are a main source of European imports of renewable energy goods.

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