India faces flak at WTO over import curbs


India’s determination to curb inbound shipments of sure kinds of tyres and ban the import of air-conditioners with refrigerants has as soon as once more come beneath hearth on the World Trade Organization (WTO), with varied nations calling these measures restrictive and discriminatory.

Nearly two years after India imposed these measures, the EU mentioned that solely a restricted variety of licences have been granted to the financial bloc’s tyre producers. At a WTO assembly this week, Taiwan mentioned that the measure is “restrictive and discriminatory.” In the identical assembly, Japan criticised India’s transfer in 2020 to ban the import of ACs with refrigerants, and termed it “superfluous.”

Taiwan mentioned the curbs in place for nearly two years have affected its exports to India, leading to a “sharp lower of exports in 2020 and 2021 in contrast with the identical interval in 2019.”

It additionally mentioned India seems to subject import licences just for these tyres not produced domestically, and requested how such a measure can be appropriate with WTO guidelines regarding quantitative restrictions. “Taiwan urged India to make sure that functions are correctly granted notably the non-automatic licences, and shouldn’t be commerce restrictive and have a distortive impact on commerce,” mentioned a Geneva-based official conscious of the assembly’s particulars.

As per the official, the EU, Indonesia, the US and Thailand additionally raised questions over New Delhi’s transfer.

“Solely a restricted variety of licences have been granted to EU tyre producers and these licences are themselves restricted in period, portions and kinds of tyres,” the official mentioned. Indonesia mentioned the coverage is inconsistent with the ideas of non-discrimination and nationwide remedy.

New Delhi reiterated that the non-automatic licensing necessities for tyres are administered in a way in keeping with the foundations of the WTO settlement on import licensing procedures, and that the process is being administered in a good method.

On the problem of the import ban on ACs, Japan mentioned it “unreasonably imposes a disruptive factor in world provide chains” whereas India argued that the measure is in keeping with its obligations beneath the Montreal Protocol. “Nonetheless, Japan mentioned this import ban is superfluous and that these air conditioners are topic to neither India’s discount and preliminary obligation beneath Montreal Protocol, nor its home laws,” the official mentioned.

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