India has 30 days to respond to the US complaint on its export subsidies

Only 30 days are allowed to reply to a request for consultation under SCMA.

It seems like the trade dispute between the US and India is not going to end soon. A complaint filed by the US last week against the export subsidies provided by India at the World Trade Organization (WTO) is the recent development in the series of trade disputes between both the countries.

India has to respond to the complaint filed by the US authorities at the dispute settlement body of the WTO within 30 days.

Earlier it was assumed that India would get 60 days to file the response. But, a report by The Economic Times says that India needs to reply to the complaint within 30 days.

The US has requested WTO consultations with India concerning alleged export subsidies provided by India through various programs. According to America, the export subsidies provided by India harm the US workers.

The letter sent by the US alleged that India violated the norms of Article 3.1(a) of the WTO’s Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (SCM Agreement) and that India appears to have acted inconsistently with Article 3.2 of the SCM Agreement.

As per the rules, only 30 days are allowed to reply to a request for consultation under SCMA. “There is a period of 30 days to reply,” a Geneva-based WTO official told The Economic Times. “Response time for normal disputes is 60 days, but in case of export subsidies, it is 30 days,” said another expert on WTO matters.

In the complaint, the US has questioned almost all export subsidy programs run by the India government. The letter has listed five programs; Export Oriented Units Scheme and sector-specific schemes, including Electronics Hardware Technology Parks Scheme; Special Economic Zones; Export Promotion Capital Goods Scheme; and a duty-free imports for exporters program.

Washington has argued that India is subject to the obligations of Article 3.1(a) of the SCM Agreement because India’s gross national product per capita has reached $1,000 per annum. But, India provides subsidies contingent upon export performance. The measures appear to be inconsistent with Article 3.1(a) of the SCM Agreement, and India appears to have acted inconsistently with Article 3.2 of the SCM Agreement.

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