02:49 GMT29 January 2020
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    According to the most recent figures, exports from India to the US under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) rose from $4.58 billion in 2015 to $5.58 billion in 2017.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — The Trump administration has withdrawn duty-free concessions under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) on the imports of at least 50 Indian products, mostly from the handloom and agricultural sectors.

    President Donald Trump issued a presidential proclamation on Tuesday, leading to the removal of these products from the privilege beginning November 1. 

    "These products will no longer qualify for duty-free preferences under the GSP program but may continue to be imported subject to regular Most Favored Nation duty-rates," an official of the US Trade Representative told the news agency PTI.

    The Trump administration started reviewing the GSP program after two petitions filed by American lobby groups — the dairy industry and the medical equipment sector earlier this year. Both the sectors had been lobbying aggressively after the Indian government, last year, imposed a price cap on coronary stents and other medical equipment to make health treatment cheaper for ordinary consumers. 

    However, sources in India's Ministry of Commerce have told Sputnik that the revoking of GSP is not country specific.

    "Withdrawal of GSP products was done through a regular review process and is not targeted towards any specific country. Impact of GSP withdrawal on 50 Indian products will be $72.3 million based on 2017 data," a government official said.

    The GSP is designed to promote economic development by allowing duty-free entry for thousands of products from designated countries.

    Meanwhile, White House Chief Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow told the media on Thursday that US President Donald Trump has spoken to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discussed trade issues between the two countries.

    "We (India and US) are in talks. We are in talks absolutely. India is a highly-valued ally. The president has spoken to the prime minister and so forth. We're in talks," White House Chief Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow told reporters.

    Last week, India's Minister of Commerce Suresh Prabhu said that the US had exchanged offers for a possible trade deal with a view to resolving issues related to bilateral commerce.


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