After extending the deadline for many times India has decided to impose additional customs duties on 29 United States products including like almond, walnut and pulses from June 16 onwards according to some sources. A notification with this regard will be issued by the finance ministry soon they also added.
The decision will hurt American exporters of these 29 items as they have to pay extra duties on these products. India would get about $217 million more revenue from such imports. The Indian government had on June 21 2018 decided to impose the extra duties in retaliation to the Donald Trump administration’s decision of remarkably raising the customs duty on certain steel and aluminium products.
India has informed the United States about its decision to go ahead with the retaliatory duties the sources said. The deadline for imposition of these duties was extended multiple times hoping that some solution would emerge during discussion at reaching an agreement between India and the United States to put forward a trade package.But those negotiations come to an end after the decision of the United States to withdraw export incentives
to Indian exporters under its Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) law. These advantages were rolled back from June 5.
India’s move comes ahead of the meeting between United States President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the sidelines of the G20 meeting on 28 and 29 June at Osaka Japan. Ahead of the meeting United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is planning to visit New Delhi on 25 and 26 June on his way to the G-20 Summit to have discussion involving both sides with his Indian coequal S Jaishankar.It would effect goods worth $5.5 billion from India to United States.While import duty on walnut has been hiked to 120 percent from 30 percent duty on chickpeas, Bengal gram (chana) and masur dal will be raised to 70 percent from 30 percent currently. Levy on lentils will be increased to 40 percent.The duty on boric acid and binders for foundry moulds would be increased to 7.5 percent while that on domestic reagents will be raised to 10 percent.
Duty on artemia,a kind of shrimp will be hiked to 15 percent.The other products on which duties will be increased include certain kind of nuts, iron, steel products, apples, pears, flat rolled products of stainless steel, other alloy steel, tube and pipe fittings, and screws, bolts and rivets.India has also dragged the United States to the World Trade Organisation’s dispute settlement over the imposition of extra import duties on steel and aluminium.India exports steel and aluminium products worth about $1.5 billion to the United States each year.India’s exports to the United States in 2017 to 2018 were at $47.9 billion while the imports were at $26.7 billion. The trade balance was in favour of India.Several members of the US Congress and US manufacturers had urged Trump not to withdraw GSP benefits available to India since New Delhi is a long term ally and the decision will increase input costs for American producers.