India, US to Resolve Dispute on Import Restrictions on Poultry Products

The United States and India have agreed to resolve their last outstanding dispute at the World Trade Organization on import restrictions on poultry products from Washington with New Delhi throwing in some additional sweeteners in the form of duty cuts on frozen turkey, frozen duck and a variety of cranberries and blueberries, per a statement from the United States Trade Representative office.

As part of the agreement, India also agreed to reduce tariffs on certain US products, including frozen turkey, frozen duck, fresh blueberries and cranberries, frozen blueberries and cranberries, dried blueberries and cranberries, and processed blueberries and cranberries. These tariff cuts will expand economic opportunities for U.S. agricultural producers in a critical market and help bring more U.S. products to customers in India,” per a statement issued by the USTR office following Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden’s bilateral meeting in Delhi on Friday.

Biden is in India to attend the G20 Summit being hosted by the country on September 9-10.

The US filed a poultry case against India in the WTO way back in 2012 for the removal of an import ban imposed by the country on US poultry on account of bird flu.

India lost the case at the WTO at the panel level in 2014 and also subsequently at the appellate level.

While India then lifted the ban, the US was not satisfied with the mechanism involved for poultry shipments and also the steep import duties and hence did not withdraw the case at the WTO.

Last month, Tai met Minister of Commerce and Industry Piyush Goyal following the G20 Trade and Investment Ministers’ Meeting during which the two discussed the WTO dispute on poultry products and expressed their shared desire to reach a solution soon.

“Resolving this last outstanding WTO dispute represents an important milestone in the U.S.-India trade relationship, while reducing tariffs on certain U.S. products enhances crucial market access for American agricultural producers,” Tai said.

Source: The Business Line