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United States Issues WTO Counter Notification Concerning India’s Market Price Support for Various Pulses

02/15/2019

Washington, DC - U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced that the United States, together with Canada, submitted a counter notification in the World Trade Organization (WTO) Committee on Agriculture (COA) on India’s market price support for five pulses: chickpeas, pigeon peas, black matpe, mung beans, and lentils.

Based on United States/Canadian calculations, it appears that India has substantially underreported its market price support for chickpeas, pigeon peas, black matpe, mung beans, and lentils. When calculated according to WTO Agreement on Agriculture methodology, India’s market price support for each of these pulses far exceeded its WTO allowable levels of trade-distorting domestic support. The United States expects a robust discussion on how India implements and notifies its policies at the next COA meeting, which is scheduled for February 26-27, 2019.

Background:

On February 12, 2019, the United States submitted a counter notification, co-sponsored by Canada, in the WTO COA on India’s market price support for chickpeas, pigeon peas, black matpe, mung beans, and lentils – based on publicly available information. The United States and Canada have identified several areas of potential concern with India’s WTO notification of its market price support for chickpeas, pigeon peas, black matpe, mung beans, and lentils. These include issues with the quantity of production used in market price support calculations, exclusion from India’s notification of information on the total value of production for each category of pulse (information necessary to assess compliance with WTO commitments), issues with currency conversions, and issues regarding the prices used in India’s calculations.

This is the third U.S. COA counter notification regarding another country’s measures.  Previous U.S. counter notifications have addressed India’s market price support for cotton, rice and wheat.  Australia has submitted a counter notification regarding India’s market price support for sugarcane.

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