India moves WTO against US over heavy steel, aluminium tariffs
Just when an American lawmaker tried to find itself on the same page with India against China saying the latter was aiming to use Taiwan as a military base to isolate countries like India and Japan, New Delhi dragged Washington to the World Trade Organisation's (WTO) dispute settlement mechanism over the Donald Trump administration's decision of imposing import duties on steel and aluminium, PTI cited an official as saying.
India said the US's decision will affect exports of these products to the US and it is not non-conforming to global trade norms, the PTI report added.
"India has filed a dispute under the aegis of the WTO on the issue of imposing import duties by the US on certain steel and aluminium products," the report quoted the official as saying.
India has sought consultations with the US under the WTO's dispute settlement mechanism, PTI reported, adding that seeking consultation is the initial step of a dispute settlement process and if the two countries are unable to arrive at a mutually agreed solution through talks, India may ask a WTO dispute settlement panel to review the issue.
US President Trump imposed heavy tariffs on his country's steel and aluminium exports on March 9, sparking concerns over an impact on global trade.
He did not even spare US's allies and signed a couple of proclamations that levied 25 per cent tariff on steel and 10 per cent on aluminium imported from all nations, except Canada and Mexico. Though his trade offensives vis-à-vis China caught more limelight, many other countries also feared for trade reverses. One among them, India, sought exemptions from the heavy tariffs.
India's exports of steel and aluminium products to the US are estimated to be around US$1.5 billion annually, the PTI report added.
Some expert voices, however, feel that dragging the US in the dispute is not something in favour of India as it has a trade surplus with the US, the PTI report added.
India's exports to the US in 2016-17 were worth US$42.21 billion, while imports were US$22.3 billion, it said.