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EU pursues probe of Chinese solar subsidies

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August 7, 2013 12:53 PM EST | AP

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BRUSSELS — The European Union is pressing ahead with an investigation of whether China unfairly helps its solar panel makers with government subsidies.

The European Commission, the 28-nation bloc's executive arm, had only days ago agreed to a settlement over China's alleged practice of selling its panels below cost, a practice known as dumping. But complaints over Beijing's alleged state subsidies were never settled.

In this ongoing probe, the EU said Wednesday it will determine by the end of the year whether punitive anti-subsidy duties are required.

Both complaints, of dumping and state aid, were filed by Europe's solar industry, which is suffering in the face of falling prices and global production overcapacity.

China in 2011 exported solar panels and related products worth 21 billion euros to the EU.