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EU complains to WTO about Canadian feed-in tariff

The EU has complained to the World Trade Organization (WTO) about the requirement of a certain share of renewable energy equipment and services to be sourced locally under the Ontario feed-in tariff.

By Kari Williamson

The EU requested consultations with Canada under the dispute settlement system over Canada’s feed-in tariff system on 11 August. This formally initiates a dispute in the WTO.

Ontario’s Green Energy Act requires a certain percentage of renewable energy equipment and services to come from local businesses, which according to the EU, acts as a barrier to European countries wishing to develop solar and wind power projects in the region.

Japan has already complained against Ontario in the WTO, and in June, the Chinese Government had to end its local content subsidy programme for wind manufacturers after the US trade union United Steelworkers filed a complaint, as reported by Renewable Energy Focus USA.

If consultations fail to resolve the dispute within a 60 days window, the complainant may request adjudication by a panel, the WTO says.

The EU is currently negotiating a bilateral free-trade agreement with Canada.

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