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We meet criteria to reclaim US trade concessions: India tells US


New Delhi, Sep 19: India on Thursday said that it meets the criteria for the Generalised System of Preferences that the United States eliminated in June, and urged it should take a call on reinstating the trade concessions.

Donald Trump and Narendra Modi

The statement comes a day after 44 influential US lawmakers called upon the Donald Trump administration to reinstate India as a beneficiary of the scheme of duty-free import for developing nations.

"Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) is a unilateral decision, given by countries to other countries based on certain criteria. We are a developing country, we meet those criteria. I do not recall our ever stating that we are not interested in GSP," Foreign Secy Vijay Gokhale said.

"The US unilaterally withdrew that concession from us, we believe that GSP is something which is important for our industry but ultimately it is a matter for the US to take a call on," he added.

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In March, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer announced that the US will terminate India's designation as beneficiary developing country under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) programme

India imposed retaliatory tariffs on 28 US products including almonds and apples from June 5, after the Trump administration revoked its preferential trade privileges

Trade tensions between India and the US have been rising with US President Donald Trump complaining that tariffs imposed by New Delhi on American products were "no longer acceptable"

New Delhi has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the Generalised System of Preferences scheme that allowed zero tariff entry to some imports from 120 countries.

The GSP is the largest and oldest US trade preference programme and meant to promote economic development by allowing duty-free entry for products from the beneficiary countries.

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