India has termed Donald Trump’s move to end the preferential trade status as unfortunate. In a statement released today, the Government of India said that, “India, as part of our bilateral trade relations, had offered resolution on significant US requests to find a mutually acceptable way forward. Unfortunate that this didn’t find acceptance by the US.” “In any relationship, particularly in the area of economic ties, there are issues which get resolved mutually from time to time. We view this issue as a part of a regular process and will continue to build on our strong ties with the US, both economic and people to people,” the statement added.
In another setback, President Donald Trump on Friday had announced that the United States would end its preferential trade treatment for India on June 5. "I have determined that India has not assured the United States that India will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets," Trump said in a statement released by the White House. The Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program allows preferential duty-free imports of up to $5.6 billion from India making it one of the biggest beneficiaries.
"I have determined that India has not assured the US that it will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets. Accordingly, it is appropriate to terminate India's designation as a beneficiary developing country effective June 5, 2019," Trump said in a proclamation on Friday, ignoring the plea made by several top American lawmakers as it will cost American businesses over USD 300 million in additional tariffs every year.
On March 4, Trump announced that the US intends to terminate India's designations as a beneficiary developing country under the GSP programme. The 60-day notice period ended on May 3.
Trump is known for his hawkish stance in trade ties. After Mexico and China, Trump had launched a new tariff war against India. The US President time now and time again claimed that India is a "tariff king" and imposes "tremendously high" tariffs on American products. "For so many decades we've been losing tens of billions of dollars to China and Japan, and India, and name any country and we lost, but we're not losing anymore," he said at a rally earlier this year. "We charge other countries zero tariffs on foreign paper products, but when Wisconsin paper companies export it abroad... China charged us big tariffs, India charged us big tariffs, Vietnam charge us massive tariffs," Trump had said.