In a sudden announcement after 8pm on Friday May 31, 2019, the President made the anticipated decision that India was to be removed from the Generalized System of Preferences (“GSP”), effective June 5, 2019.  The statement issued by the White House claims that the President had “determined that India has not assured the United States that India will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets.” The end of GSP eligibility and removal of India’s developing country status comes after holding that status for approximately 30 years and is a deepening indication of the U.S.’s increased protectionist stance in the global trading environment.  Last month the U.S. ended Turkey’s preferential status.
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The U.S. is expected to make an announcement on whether India will retain eligibility under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program within the next two weeks according to unidentified sources cited by Reuters. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) is currently reviewing the eligibility of Indian products for duty-free entry into the U.S. under GSP as a response to petitions from the dairy and medical device industries. On November 1, 2018, USTR suspended GSP tariff reductions on 90 imports from India worth $75 billion including textiles, chemicals, and musical instruments.
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