India takes US steel tariffs fight to WTO
South Asian nation may retaliate if not given exemption
Add India to the list of U.S. allies that plan to fight America’s steel and aluminum tariffs at the World Trade Organization.
The country’s government recently told the WTO it was ready to slap retaliatory tariffs on $165 million in U.S. goods, including agricultural products, in response to the U.S. move enacting a 25 percent tariff on imported steel and a 15 percent tariff on imported aluminum. It has filed a formal complaint with the trade organization.
The formal complaint starts a 60-day window where WTO will attempt to mediate an end to the dispute. If an agreement is not reached within two months, India can seek to have the complaint decided by a WTO panel.
President Donald Trump announced the tariffs in March, saying they were necessary to restore “balance” with foreign steel-producing countries such as China. The decision has roiled many business groups that support free trade, but it has pleased steelmakers and those within the president’s cabinet who prefer a more protectionist trade policy.