Breadcrumb

U.S.-India Agreement Brings Indian Mangoes into United States

05/01/2007

WASHINGTON DC – U.S. Trade
Representative Susan C. Schwab today received the first shipment of fresh
mangoes from India, marking
the successful culmination of a bilateral initiative to create new opportunities
for Indian farmers and U.S. consumers.


“The Indian mangoes I enjoyed today represent more than
just a market opening for one product,” said Ambassador Schwab.  “The
success of the mango initiative signals the determination of both
India and the
United
States to forge deeper and stronger trade ties
and create significant new economic opportunities for the people of both of our
vast countries.”


The mango initiative, launched by President Bush and Prime
Minister Singh just over a year ago, was aimed at facilitating entry of Indian
mangoes into the U.S. market.  Several
U.S. government agencies worked
intensively with Indian officials on a range of technical issues so that the
first shipment of mangoes coincided with the current harvest
season.


Ambassador Schwab visited a successful agricultural
business and a subsistence farming community on a visit to India in mid-April that focused on strategic
trade issues with India.  That visit highlighted
both the challenges and the opportunities in opening new trade flows between the
United States and
India and the importance of
more fully connecting India to global trading
system.


BACKGROUND


The United
States and India are currently in negotiations
with World Trade Organization Members aimed at a successful conclusion of the
Doha Development Round, which could spur development, create economic
opportunities and alleviate poverty.


As part of a broader set of bilateral initiatives, in
March 2006, President Bush and Prime Minister Singh agreed that India and the
United States would work together to facilitate entry of Indian mangoes into the
U.S. market.   The U.S. Department of Agriculture and
its Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), (with assistance from
Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology – NIST)
worked with Indian counterparts to succeed in this initiative in a timely
fashion.  Indian mangoes typically peak in April/May and run until the
monsoons begin in July, but they are late this year due to heavy spring
rains.


The United
States and India maintain one of the world’s
fastest growing major bilateral trade relationships and are committed to a goal
of doubling bilateral trade to approximately US$ 60 billion by 2008. Bilateral
US-India trade has been growing at an average rate of almost 20 percent per year
for the past five years.


During her visit in mid-April, Schwab served as co-chair
the fourth Ministerial-level meeting of the U.S.-India Trade Policy Forum, an
initiative launched in July 2005 aimed at strengthening bilateral trade ties and
achieving progress in the areas of agricultural trade, investment, trade in
services, reduction of tariff and non-tariff barriers, and boosting innovation
and creativity.   While in India, Ambassador Schwab also held
in-depth discussions with senior Indian officials on WTO’s Doha Round.