Title: India to flag steel duty hike issue at Trade Policy Forum meet with US on April 10
NEW DELHI: India will take up the issue of duty hike on certain steel and aluminium products by the US at the Trade Policy Forum (TPF) meeting on April 10, a commerce ministry official has said.
Other issues, including greater market access for certain fruits like mangoes as well as visa related matters, will also figure in the meeting of senior officials of India and the US, the official said.
The TPF is the premier bilateral forum for discussion and resolution of trade and investment issues between the two countries.
It has five focus groups: Agriculture, Investment, Innovation and Creativity (intellectual property rights), Services, and Tariff and Non-Tariff Barriers.
Both sides would discuss ways to further boost the bilateral trade and investments, the official added.
The Trump administration has imposed 25 per cent import duty on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium items, triggering fears of a global trade war.
The ministry is already studying the impact of duty hike as India exports these goods worth about USD 1.6 billion a year to America.
With hike in tariffs by the US government, exports of these products to the American market will become expensive and could impact the competitiveness of domestic items.
Major steel exporters to the US comprise Canada, Brazil, South Korea, Mexico and Russia which together account for close to 60 per cent of the shipments.
India exported close to 0.9 million tonnes (MT) steel to America in 2017.
Some trade experts have suggested that India should drag the US in the World Trade Organization's (WTO) dispute mechanism against the move as it is not in compliance with the global trade norms.
The bilateral trade between the countries increased to USD 64.52 billion in 2016-17 from USD 62.11 billion in the previous fiscal.
India has received USD 22 billion foreign direct investment from the US between April 2000 and December 2017.