No big deal! India says impact of US special trade status withdrawal limited : 05-03-2019

India has said the US’ withdrawal of duty benefits to its $5.6 billion of exports will not have a major impact on India’s bilateral trade and denied US president Donald Trump’s accusation of the country having high tariffs.

Washington announced on Tuesday its decision to pull the plug on the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) scheme for India citing “its failure to provide the US with assurances that it will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets in numerous sectors”.

The US trade representative said it intends to terminate India’s and Turkey’s designations as beneficiary developing countries under the GSP programme because they no longer comply with the statutory eligibility criteria.

“GSP benefits are relatively limited,” said commerce secretary Anup Wadhawan, adding that the benefits will be discontinued after 60 days. India’s total GSP duty benefits were $190 million.

These changes would be effective after the notifications to the US Congress and the government of India, and will be enacted by a Presidential Proclamation.

The review of Indian exports’ eligibility for low or zero tariffs began last April, mainly at the behest of American medical and dairy industries.

However, India is yet to take a call on extending the retaliatory tariffs or higher duties worth $235 million on 29 American goods beyond April 1 as it is a different issue, Wadhawan said.

Source : Financial Express

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