Monday, 23 July, 2018

After Solar Power Dispute, US Challenges India's Export Subsidy Programmes at WTO

Image for representation only Image for representation only
Ben Pena | 16 March, 2018, 10:01

America yesterday challenged India's export subsidy programmes such as Merchandise Exports from India Scheme in the World Trade Organisation (WTO), saying these initiatives harm the United States companies by creating an uneven playing field.

It has filed a complaint at the WTO about India's export subsidy programmes claiming them to harm American workers.

"If the United States and India are not able to reach a mutually agreed solution through consultations, the United States may request the establishment of a WTO dispute settlement panel to review the matter".

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The United States has disputed nearly all the export subsidies offered by India. The commerce secretary explained that a clause in WTO's agreement on subsidies and countervailing measures provides a period of eight years for graduating countries (crossing the Dollars 1,000 mark) to phase out export subsidies.

"USTR will continue to hold our trading partners accountable by vigorously enforcing United States rights under our trade agreements and by promoting fair and reciprocal trade through all available tools, including the WTO", Lighthizer added.

NCAA Tournament 2018, Alabama vs Virginia Tech
The Hokies fell back down to earth in the second half, making just 2 of 9 shots from 3-point range. He knocked down a turnaround jumper with 1:35 remaining to push Alabama's advantage to 77-72.

According to WTO norms, some of the developing countries, like India, have the privilege of export subsidies.

The desired economic benchmark of WTO is gross national income per capita less than $1,000 per annum.

It has also objected to duty-free imports for Indian exporters.

Government data show that thousands of Indian companies receive benefits worth $7 billion (approximately Rs 4.5 lakh crore) annually from these schemes.

The secretary said that a clause of WTO's Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures provides a period of eight years for graduating countries (crossing the Dollars 1,000 mark) to phase out export subsidies. Lighthizer accused India of increasing the size and scope of these programs instead of concluding them.

The White House is also considering slapping tariffs on billions of U.S. dollars of Chinese imports, particularly in the tech and telecommunications sector, in response to allegedly improper practices involving usa intellectual property. In India's case, the country is approaching the cut-off thresholds set by the WTO for various sectors. Exports from the Export Oriented Units Scheme and sector specific schemes, including Electronics Hardware Technology Parks Scheme, increased by over 160 percent from 2000 to 2016.

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