Chinese officials have made good on their threat to launch a trade investigation of their own into U.S. subsidies for renewable energy products.
The Chinese investigation, announced Friday, will cover solar, hydroelectric and wind power components, in what seems to be a retaliatory gesture against the United States, reports AFP.
The announcement comes three days before United States International Trade Commission investigators finish their preliminary report and submit it to the trade commission for review.
Since Oct. 19, the Commission has been conducting a preliminary investigation into Chinese subsidies and dumping of solar cells into the U.S.
The dispute has divided the solar industry in the U.S.
In the end, what is at risk is the possibility that the trade row will impose tariffs on Chinese goods to the detriment of the U.S. solar industry. Since the dispute was filed in October by SolarWorld Industries America, the Chinese government and Chinese solar companies have been vocal in their opposition.
On Nov. 7, China Energy Conservation and Environment Protection Group held back on $500 million worth of solar components from U.S. projects. The company cited the trade complaint could make conducting business for the company too expensive and economically not viable if tariffs are imposed.
Since then, China has upped its tone.
On Nov. 22, Beijing warned it will look into launching its own trade investigation against the U.S.
The investigation launched Friday will last until May 25, but could be extended to Aug. 25.