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    Commerce Secretary-designate Wilbur Ross returns back to the hearing room after a brief recess on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Commerce Committee

    US Commerce Secretary to Visit India Amid Reports of Zero Tariff Withdrawal

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    The US started reviewing the Generalised System of Preferences programme earlier this year, acting on petitions filed by a lobbyist representing its dairy and medical equipment sector. These sectors have been hit hard by India's decision to block the import of American dairy products and cap the price on coronary stents and other medical equipment.

    New Delhi (Sputnik): US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross is visiting New Delhi next week in what the US Trade department terms as "critical" for the bilateral relationship.

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    Ross' visit to New Delhi comes in the backdrop of reports that India could lose a vital US trade concession — the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), under which it enjoys zero tariffs on $5.6 billion worth of exports to the United States.
    Last November, the Trump administration withdrew duty-free concessions under the GSP on the imports of at least 50 Indian products, mostly from the handloom and agricultural sectors.
    On 14 February, Secretary Ross will co-chair the US-India Forum with Indian Minister of Commerce and Industry Suresh Prabhu in New Delhi.
    "The U.S.-India CEO Forum is critical to the fruitful commercial relationship and strong economic ties between our two great nations…The incoming US CEOs will bring fresh perspectives to the Forum and help us consider new opportunities to further deepen our cooperation", a press statement by Wilbur Ross, secretary of commerce, reads.
    Besides discussions on the ongoing dispute over trade tariffs, price capping of medical equipment and the export of dairy products to India, Secretary Ross is also expected to voice America's concerns about India's revised e-commerce policy and data localisation policy.

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    Since 1 February, e-commerce companies like Wallmart-owned Flipkart and Amazon have been asked to stop selling products of companies in which they have stakes. The notification, issued last December, also prohibits the e-commerce companies from entering into an agreement with brands for the exclusive sale of products.

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