- The ongoing negotiations between India and the U.S. on multiple trade tussles are progressing smoothly and a deal could be announced when an Indian delegation visits America in mid-July.
- Trade tussle:
- The U.S. had invoked Section 232 (b) of the U.S. Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose 25% duties on steel and aluminium from India. India had taken the issue to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
- The U.S. is also challenging India at the WTO for its export subsidy programmes.
- American companies are also protesting data localisation requirements that India has announced.
- GSP status:
- The USTR has launched a process to terminate the Generalised System Preferences (GSP) status for India, partly in response to complaints from U.S. manufacturers of medical devices.
- The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) is a U.S. trade program designed to promote economic growth in the developing world by providing preferential duty-free entry.
- After recent delegation visits led by senior authority of trade and commerce of both countries, a package deal may be announced to ease multiple trade tussles.
- As part of a package deal, America is likely to maintain the Generalised System Preferences (GSP) for India, which allows many exporters to enjoy lower tariffs on specific exports to the U.S.
- India is likely to change the price restrictions imposed on medical devices imported from America to trade margin rationalisation, a more acceptable global practice being demanded by American manufactures.
- The deal is likely to involve bringing down the duty on high-end Harley-Davidson motorcycles to zero, addressing an issue that President Donald Trump continues to raise publicly and privately about trade relations with India.
- India imports only a few dozen fully assembled motorcycles in the high capacity category that attracts highest duties.
- Other market access issues are also on the table.
- Even partial resolution of the pending trade issues could infuse fresh new energy in bilateral ties, which have taken a hit by the abrupt postponement by the U.S., of the 2+2 dialogue between the Defence and Foreign Ministers of both countries that had been scheduled for this week.