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Dairy access issue halts India-US trade deal

After US has sought access for its dairy industry without addressing New Delhi’s concerns on the issue, the possibility of a trade deal between the two nations is bleak. This comes ahead of President Donald Trump’s visit to New Delhi on February 24-25. India has been insisting on mandatory certification of dairy products by veterinary officials specifying that the source animal was not raised on feed made of bovine extracts, a religious issue in India. Other exporters including the European Union, Australia and New Zealand also provide this certification.

Washington’s recent move to remove India from its list of developing (because of the country being a G-20 member and having a share of 0.5% or more of world trade) has also dealt a severe blow to their trade ties. After Brazil, Indonesia, Hong Kong, South Africa and Argentina, India has joined the bandwagon of countries that no longer get special preferences under the country’s methodology for countervailing duty probes. Further, US remains unrelenting to India’s demand regarding the restoration of the GSP status.