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01 February 2011

Report: Germany mulling further cuts to solar subsidy

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Economic Ministry pushes for deeper cuts to feed-in tariffs

The German government is considering further cuts to its popular solar power feed-in tariff incentive scheme, according to reports late last week.

News agency Reuters reported the country's Economic Ministry held talks with the Environment Ministry on Friday in an attempt to reduce feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaic installations.

Senior officials said no agreement was reached, but confirmed the Economic Ministry was looking to tighten the rules governing the scheme.

"The Economy Ministry wants to have solar power production switched off when the grid is overloaded on sunny days," one official told Reuters, adding that it also wanted to enforce deeper cuts to tariffs from July this year.

The Environment Ministry announced last week that it plans to pull forward by six months proposed cuts to feed-in tariffs of up to 15 per cent. The new cuts are expected to come into force on July 1, but the Economic Ministry would like to see the cuts go further and is pushing for subsidies to be slashed by up to 25 per cent.

Last week's meeting is the latest twist in a long-running saga that has seen German politicians repeatedly clash over the future of the country's pioneering feed-in tariff scheme.


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