India and the US have embarked on a trade war over restrictions on poultry imports and higher visa fees. India has dragged the US to the World Trade Organization’s (WTO’s) dispute settlement body (DSB) over an increase in the professional visa fee. Both sides will present a case to the WTO’s dispute settlemement body (DSB) on India’s ban on US poultry imports, Business Standard reports.
This is for the first time in the history of their bilateral relations that India is taking the US to the WTO.
On April 16, India and the US will consult on the case concerning India’s ban on US poultry imports. If the consultations fail to resolve the issue, the US possesses the right to call for a dispute settlement panel, giving rise to a full-fledged dispute. Normally, it takes almost 8-10 years for a case to be settled at the DSB.
India’s poultry market is one of the largest in the world and it had been maintaining the ban on US poultry products since 2007 even after the US denied having any inconsistencies on international safety standards. According to US trade representative Ron Kirk, India has never substantiated its arguments with proper scientific evidence.
“Every country today is becoming protectionist, with the huge churn that is happening in the global economy. There is still a huge slump in US employment rates. India and the US are stuck in matters of national importance having political repercussions. Every country is now apprehensive of India’s economic might and its impact on their economies,” said T S Vishwanath, principal adviser, APJ-SLG Law Offices.