DS: United States — Safeguard Measure on Imports of Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Products

This summary has been prepared by the Secretariat under its own responsibility. The summary is for general information only and is not intended to affect the rights and obligations of Members.


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Summary of the dispute to date

The summary below was up-to-date at


Complaint by China

On 14 August 2018, China requested consultations with the United States concerning the definitive safeguard measure imposed by the United States on imports of certain crystalline silicon photovoltaic products.

China claimed that the measures appear to be inconsistent with:

  • Articles 2.1, 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1, 4.2, 5.1, 7.1, 7.4, 8.1, 12.1, 12.2 and 12.3 of the Agreement on Safeguards; and
  • Articles X:3, XIII, XIX:1(a) and XIX:2 of the GATT 1994.

On 24 August 2018, the United States requested the Chair of the DSB to circulate to Members a communication where it indicated that the United States was willing to enter into consultations with China, without prejudice to the US view that China's letter of 14 August 2018 did not satisfy the requirements of Article 4 of the DSU.

On 24 August 2018, the European Union requested to join the consultations. On 27 August 2018, Thailand requested to join the consultations. On 22 October 2018, the United States informed the DSB that it had accepted both requests to join the consultations.


Panel and Appellate Body proceedings

On 11 July 2019, China requested the establishment of a Panel. At its meeting on 22 July 2019, the DSB deferred the establishment of a panel.

At its meeting on 15 August 2019, the DSB established a panel. Brazil, Canada, the European Union, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, the Russian Federation and Chinese Taipei reserved their third-party rights.

On 14 October 2019, China requested the Director-General to compose the panel. On 24 October 2019, the Director-General composed the panel.

On 24 April 2020, the Chair of the panel informed the DSB that, due to a delay in the beginning of the panel’s work resulting from the lack of available experienced lawyers in the Secretariat and delays caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, the panel did not expect to issue its final report to the parties before the end of 2020.



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