Turkey may withdraw duty on imports of Indian cotton yarn
Dated- 23 Apr , 2012 - Turkey
Turkey has expressed its willingness to withdraw safeguard duty on imports of Indian cotton yarn within a year, provided India refrains from pursuing legal proceedings at the WTO, sources said.
An indication to this effect was given by Turkey in a draft submitted to the Commerce Ministry.
"The consultations (on the issue) were held (in) March following which a draft of agreement has been received from Turkish side. It provides for lifting of the current safeguard measures within one year, starting with the entry into force the agreement/MoU provided India shall not seek a DSU (dispute settlement unit) panel investigation," said a source.
India had requested for consultations with Turkey under the dispute settlement system of the WTO to resolve the dispute over the imposition of special import duties on Indian cotton yarn. The request for consultations, filed on February 13, formally initiates a dispute in the WTO.
Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma has also raised concerns on the issue during his meeting with Minister of State in charge of foreign trade of Turkey Zafer Caglayan on April 19 at the sidelines of G-20 Trade Ministers' meeting in Mexico.
The country has said that additional import duties imposed by Turkey "are very high and have affected exports of fabrics and garments from India. This sharp increase in duties could lead to high price rise and resistance from Turkish consumers," the source said.
The duty by Turkey, a major producer of cotton, was imposed in 2008 for a period of three years. When the term expired in July 2011, the country re-imposed the duty.
According to industry experts, the duty was increased to 15-20 per cent. Indian cotton yarn producers have said that these markets are resorting to unnecessary restrictions.
Consultations give the parties an opportunity to discuss the matter and to find a solution without proceeding further with litigation.
After 60 days, if consultations fail to resolve the dispute, India may request adjudication by a panel.
Bilateral trade between India and Turkey in 2011 was $ 4.51 billion.
Further, India has also asked Turkey to consider issuing longer duration business visas to Indian professionals if recommended by the respective apex chambers of industry and commerce