NEW DELHI — India joined the European Union and other U.S. trading partners in retaliating against the Trump administration’s tariff hikes on steel and aluminum Thursday by raising import duties on a variety of goods, including almonds, apples and some metal products.
India had notified the World Trade Organization on June 14 of its decision to increase tariffs on more than two dozen goods from the United States. It is a $241 million measure that matches the amount of steel and aluminum import duty expected to be collected from India by the United States through the tariffs imposed by the Trump administration earlier this year. More than a third of the figure comes from almonds; India is the world’s biggest buyer of U.S.-grown almonds.
India finalized its decision during a week when the global trade war escalated, with the United States enacting $50 billion in tariffs on Chinese goods and the European Union imposing $3 billion in levies on such products as U.S.-made bourbon, peanut butter and Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Trump has erroneously called out India for its “100 percent” tariffs on Harleys; in fact India lowered its tariffs on high-end motorcycles from a range of 60 to 75 percent to 50 percent. The new tariffs will go into effect Aug. 4.
Economists noted that the amount of money involved with India’s levies dwarfed in comparison with that of China — U.S.-India trade was $114 billion in 2016, while U.S.-China trade was $648.5 billion — but that the gesture had important symbolism and could presage further strain between the two friendly democracies at a time when their diplomats are working to deepen military ties.
With its move, India is simply “returning the favor,” said Gautam Chikermane, a researcher on international and Indian economic policy at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi. But, he said, the move could hurt India’s economic growth as the country diversifies its exports, as well as prompt India “to re-look at U.S. relations as undependable.” That could push India closer to Southeast Asia and the European Union, further isolating the United States, he argued.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said in April that the U.S. trade deficit with India had fallen to $23 billion in 2017, a 6 percent decrease, as U.S. goods exported to India rose nearly $26 billion, up 18 percent from the previous year. The United States’ trade deficit with China last year, by comparison, was $376 billion.
India had sought to be exempt from the new U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum, arguing that its exports were small in comparison with other countries’, but got nowhere.
In a television interview Thursday, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross defended the Trump administration’s decision to impose tariffs, saying the actions are a defense against years of “bad practice.”
“They’re screaming and yelling — they’ve been spoiled for many, many years, and that game is over,” Ross told Bloomberg Television. “We’re going to fix the problem of protectionism around the world, and we’re going to fix it by making it more painful for those countries to do bad practices than to do the right thing, which is to lower the trade barriers and lower their tariffs.”
Trade representatives from India and the United States are to meet in New Delhi next week. Indian-U.S. trade relations are thorny even in the best of times, analysts say, with the United States pushing for market access and voicing concerns over intellectual property rights, while India wants protections for its citizens on foreign worker visas. Experts say that the Trump administration has been focused on poultry and pork imports as well as India’s imposition of price controls on medical devices.
Will12 hours ago
All top ten holders of the US treasury have reduced their holdings. Russia sold half of theirs. You may say who cares? Well, together they hold $6 trillions of US treasury. US Treasury yield has passed 3% interest rate. Once it passed 5%, US stock market is going free falling.
fcbush12 hours ago
who are our allies again? putin? kim?
PEPE12 hours ago
The average American will soon find out just how fun trade wars are.
Mike12 hours ago
WWIII coming up.
Jawara S11 hours ago
Sooooo tired of all this winning
Madibo9 hours ago
This is an easy one for the USA,.... retaliate to India by deporting the Information Technology H1B workers and Indian nationals on Student Visas.
ted6 hours ago
China next and more to come - then followed by "November Vote".
Veev11 hours ago
When your friends are your friends because you are always buying the drinks they are not really your friends. Same situation. It is time for our politicians to quit raping the average citizen to stay popular with foreign powers.
Johnny J11 hours ago
Always remember and NEVER forget, the United States holds EVERY card in the deck. All of these thieves, India, Canada, Mexico, China, and the crooks in Europe will FOLD.
Alex45 minutes ago
Well done, India, very well done indeed. Keep up with the good work and "Make China and India Strong, Prosperous and Great Again"
Jason9 hours ago
does this mean my tech support call will be answered by someone who I can verbally understand now?
Alouisis11 hours ago
Thanks fat Donnie - great negotiation.
Anonymous11 hours ago
These little countries that have made money by cutting out a piece of the American economy will always lose in a trade war.
Caring11 hours ago
Good for you, India. That is the way to show this bully of a president not to mess with the world. I hope the rest of world does the same thing.
Tawny10 hours ago
Indian Nationals constitute the largest number of H1B holders.
Send them home now; Trump, kick them all out now
jeffro9 hours ago
"The United States had an average tariff rate of 3.4 percent on imported goods in 2016, compared with 13.5 percent for India, according to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
MD878 hours ago
I LOVE TARIFFS, they are so much like taxes. OMG TAXES!
Frodo 49 hours ago
Trump can send the Indians millions of toilets; most of the population defecates in the streets and fields, or wherever the urge strikes them.
Neal10 hours ago
Let all of our loyal allies keep taking advantage of the USA. What we should do is quit sending aid to our loyal allies
American9 hours ago
Lets see how arrogant the world is when we lower our food exports. Let them eat tree bark and sand for awhile.
Bmode11 hours ago
Putin is really doing a good job running America
david12 hours ago
There's no reason whatsoever to disrespect our allies and call them childish names. None.
Steve9 hours ago
Just buy American goods. It'll be cheaper plus put people back to work and bring back our textile factories.
Mitch12 hours ago
Bring it on mfers. We can support ourselves you lazy rock throwing candies can't!
DUKE9 hours ago
Third world countries need to realize that imposing sanctions on the US will only make their economy even worst than it already is.
Bmike_6712 hours ago
This is really gonna put a big crimp in my curry addiction
James12 hours ago
No more 7 elevens for y'all homeboy!! Sinjay gonna learn the hard way!!
Dennis M8 hours ago
Maybe we should put a retaliatory stop to their migration to the USA.
ted6 hours ago
Then, US consumers are f**** to pay more for everything, starting with the high price gas now (about $4 in California)!! And the, comes November - time for vote!
foodhopper12 hours ago
Stupid Trump. Waging war on all across the board. US is strong, but not that strong. Even if the world has not been fair to US as US been to the world, we still need to pick & choose the fight carefully.