The United States and India are in the final stages of negotiating a modest confidence-building trade agreement. This is the latest in a series of recent trade successes for the Trump Administration. In addition to the very significant 2020 USMCA signing success, the Trump Administration has renegotiated the Korea-U.S. FTA, as well as negotiated stage one trade deals with Japan and China. President Donald Trump is scheduled to visit India to sign this latest deal with his counterpart Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 24-25.
USTR Robert Lighthizer will travel to India the week of Feb. 10 to meet with his counterpart Piyush Goyal to finalize the bilateral trade agreement. Market access for up to $6.4 billion in U.S. agricultural and other products will be provided in return for reciprocal restoration of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program for India. India’s GSP program reached an annual $6.4 billion before it was halted in 2019 due to “(India’s) failure to provide the United States with assurances that it will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets in numerous sectors.” The U.S. is also seeking a relaxation of price controls on imported medical devices and elimination of some non-tariff barriers.
The Trump Administration believes that this smaller agreement will not trigger trade promotion authority (TPA) or require congressional approval.