GENEVA (Reuters) - The United States won a ruling against India at the World Trade Organization on Wednesday after challenging the rules on the origin of solar cells and solar modules used in India’s national solar power program.
In a statement, the U.S. Trade Representative’s office called the ruling a significant victory that would hasten the spread of solar energy across the world and support clean-energy jobs in the United States.
The United States complained to the WTO in 2013 about the Indian solar program, which sought to ease chronic energy shortages in Asia’s third-largest economy without creating pollution.
But a requirement that certain cells and modules be made in India fell afoul of WTO rules on discriminating against imports. The United States said its solar exports to India had fallen by 90 percent from 2011, when India imposed the rules.
The WTO ruling, which can be appealed within 60 days, was repeatedly delayed as the two sides tried to negotiate a settlement. An Indian official had said a compromise might let India subsidize state projects such as defense or railway projects.
Indian officials were not immediately available to comment on the WTO ruling.
Reporting by Tom Miles in Geneva and David Lawder in Washington, additional reporting by Douglas Busvine and Manoj Kumar in New Delhi,; editing by Stephanie Nebehay, Larry King