Congress urges President to hold India accountable for WTO violations

Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 8:05 AM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Congressman Tracey Mann has urged President Joe Biden to hold India accountable for its role in depressing rice and wheat commodities.

On Friday, July 1, U.S. Representative Tracey Mann (R-KS) says he joined Rep. Rick Crawford (R-AR) to lead 12 members of Congress to send a letter to President Joe Biden to urge to hold India accountable for violating their commitments to the World Trade Organization.

Congressman Mann noted current WTO rules allow governments to subsidize up to 10% of the value of commodity production, however, the Indian government continues to do so at more than half of the value of production for several commodities - including rice and wheat.

Mann said India’s lack of rule-following and the Biden Administration’s lack of enforcement has allowed the global agricultural production and trade channel prices to trend downward. He said this has depressed the production of rice and wheat commodities and put American producers at a disadvantage.

“India’s practices are dangerously trade-distorting on a global scale and impact U.S. farmers and ranchers,” wrote the Members. " We urge the Administration to fil[e] a formal request for consultations with India at the WTO and to continue monitoring other WTO member’s domestic support programs that undermine fair trade practices. America must not yield for the sake of reaching consensus. Instead, America must work to promote solutions that will alleviate the global supply chain and food shortages, and America must take actions that will address those consumers most impacted by inflation and rising food prices.”

Mann said he and Crawford also lead their colleagues in a letter in January to U.S. Trade Representative Katerine Tai and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to urge them to hold India accountable as well.

To read the full copy of the letter, click HERE.

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