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US ends preferential trade treatment for India: What China is thinking?

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Beijing, March 6: At a time when the US is working with the Chinese to settle their ongoing trade war and a deal in that direction could be signed between the top leaderships of the two nations in late March, Washington decided to end preferential trade agreement for India, one of its strategic allies, that allows duty-free entry for exports worth $5.6 billion to the US.

Trump, who has been vocal about serving the American interests more than anything else, has accused India of failing to assure his country that it would "provide equitable and reasonable access to the markets of India".

US ends preferential trade treatment for India: What China is thinking?

The development is being seen with some conviction in China which has always viewed the US's growing bonhomie with India in the Asia-Pacific with suspicion. In a piece, China's Global Times said that it is possible that Washington will take more steps to impose pressure on New Delhi.

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"It was unrealistic to expect that India would be immune to Trump's protectionism because of the Indo-Pacific strategy, which has enhanced the strategic relationship between Washington and New Delhi. If India had any domestic companies similar to China's telecom giant Huawei, which has established a leading position in global markets, those Indian companies would also face a US crackdown," it said.

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It said under Trump's "America First" protectionist doctrine, no nation can eye getting special treatment from the US, be it China or India or any other Asian nation.

It also came up with a sinister prediction that Washington could shift its focus to other countries that enjoy trade surplus with the US once it gets over the trade war with Beijing.

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The piece also said India's ambition to become one of the world's biggest technology hubs could lead to conflicts with the US in some time. It also mentioned in this regard the "Make in India" project that the Narendra Modi government came up in 2014 to turn the nation into a major manufacturing centre.

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