U.S. to Review India’s Eligibility for GSP Scheme

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The U.S. announced intentions to review India’s eligibility for the generalized system of preferences (GSP) scheme, on April 14, 2018.

The GSP scheme of the U.S. enables certain developing economies duty-free access to trade certain products in country’s market. India has been a part of the scheme since 1976, and received duty-free access to the U.S. market to export around 3,500 India-made products from sectors such as chemicals and engineering.

The U.S. trade representative (USTR) revealed that it would be reviewing the eligibility of India, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan under the GSP. The reviews are based on the Donald Trump administration’s new GSP country eligibility assessment process, as well as GSP country eligibility petitions.

According to officials, the GSP country eligibility review for India will be based on concerns related to its compliance with the GSP market access criterion. Jeffrey Gerrish, deputy US trade representative said, “GSP provides an important tool to help enforce the Trump administration’s key principles of free and fair trade across the globe. The president is committed to ensuring that those countries who receive GSP benefits uphold their end of the bargain by continuing to meet the eligibility criteria outlined by Congress. We hope that India, Indonesia, and Kazakhstan will work with us to address the concerns that led to these new reviews.”

The U.S. was found pressing India to not extend price caps on medical devices and wanted India to allow firms to withdraw products from the market, in case they did not wish to abide by the government-determined rates.

In September, the commerce minister and the Prime Minister’s principal secretary was informed by the USTR that the pricing policy of India, created serious problems for U.S. stent makers in India.

He also urged India not to extend caps to other devices. American medical device makers also requested the USTR to suspend or withdraw India’s benefits under GSP.

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