India’s refusal to remove the 20% tariffs on Information and Communication Technologies’ (ICT) products has reportedly caused the trade deal between India and the USA to fall through. India is concerned that removing these tariffs could open up the market to a flood of Chinese products. A bilateral trade deal was expected to be announced on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting on September 25. However, after the meeting, President Trump said, “I think very soon we will have a trade deal. We will have a larger deal later on.”
Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal, and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer were involved in the deal.
India wanted the Reinstatement of preferential market access to American markets under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) program that the USA had revoked in early June. They also wanted Facilitation of processes in agricultural product markets (easier certification of food product irradiation facilities), along with greater access in some agricultural markets (grapes, pomegranates)
The US wanted greater access to Indian markets for medical devices (stents and knee implants) and dairy products. Along with the removal of price caps (Trade Margin Rationalisation or TMR) on medical devices and scrap tariffs on motorcycles (50%), automobiles (60%), and alcoholic beverages (150%)
US wanted relaxed regulations around data localization and FDI in e-commerce
India wants to be taken off the US’ “Priority Watch List” which identifies countries that pose challenges to American IPR.
After this failure, the deal was to be re-attempted on the 1st of October but there has been no news about the deal ever since.