18 U.S. Senators sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai requesting the administration pursue a World Trade Organization (WTO) case against India’s domestic support for rice and wheat production. The United States has previously highlighted India’s non-compliance through counter-notifications at the WTO Committee on Agriculture.
“American rice and wheat producers are operating at a clear disadvantage compared to their competitors, primarily from India, where the government is subsidizing more than half of the value of production for rice and wheat, instead of the 10 percent allowable under [WTO] rules,” the letter reads.
“Wheat and rice farmers rely on open markets and fair trade to facilitate trade, which plays a vital role in supporting our growers and jobs in rural America. NAWG appreciates Senator Boozman for leading this letter in the United States Senate,” said NAWG CEO Chandler Goule.
“It is important that as a WTO member, India adhere to international commitments and not continue to create unfair advantages for its domestic production and distort world trade. We appreciate these Senators bringing the issue to the attention of the administration and will continue to work with the USDA and USTR in enhancing the competitiveness of U.S. wheat in the world.”
The letter was also signed by senators from Northern Ag Network country including North Dakota’s Kevin Cramer and John Hoeven as well as Montana Senator Steve Daines.