Holding India accountable to WTO for its ‘trade distorting practices’: US lawmakers to Biden
A dozen U.S. lawmakers have written a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to file a formal request for consultations with India at the World Trade Organization (WTO) over its ‘dangerous trade-distorting practices’ which they believe have had an impact on American farmers and ranchers.
Members of Congress said current WTO rules allow governments to subsidize up to 10% of the value of commodity production.
However, the Indian government continues to subsidize more than half the production value of several commodities, including rice and wheat, they said.
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India’s “lack of compliance” and the Biden administration’s “lack of enforcement” have reshaped global agricultural production and trade channels by driving down prices, lowering rice production and wheat and disproportionately disadvantaging US producers, members of Congress alleged in the letter.
“India’s practices are dangerously distorting trade globally and impacting American farmers and ranchers,” the letter said. The head of the letter was taken by Congressmen Tracey Mann and Rick Crawford.
“We urge the administration to file a formal request for consultations with India at the WTO and to continue to monitor other WTO members’ domestic support programs that undermine fair trade practices,” they said. .
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The United States must not give in to reach a consensus. Instead, America must work to promote solutions that will alleviate global supply chain and food shortages.
It must take measures that will target the consumers most affected by inflation and rising food prices, lawmakers demanded.
“It is up to American agriculture to help create resilient conditions for food security in the United States and around the world,” they said.
India has defended its position at the WTO. Several countries and organizations across the world have applauded India for taking a strong stance in protecting the interests of its farmers.
The WTO, based in Geneva, is an intergovernmental organization that regulates and facilitates international trade. Governments use the organization to establish, review and enforce the rules that govern international trade.