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Shrimp exports to US may jump on duty removal

Shrimp exports to the US are expected to bounce back five years after they started declining, as the WTO has forced Washington to withdraw a punitive duty it imposed on such exports in 2004.

, ET Bureau|
Apr 17, 2009, 03.50 AM IST
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NEW DELHI: Shrimp exports to the US are expected to bounce back five years after they started declining, as the World Trade Organisation (WTO) has forced Washington to withdraw a punitive duty it imposed on such exports in 2004, a government official said.

India���s shrimp exports to the US, which stood at Rs 1,900 crore in 2002-03, started falling steadily since January ���04, when the US initiated its anti-dumping investigations on the product.

���The US lost the case at the WTO and had to remove the Customs bond as it was found illegal. This will help our marine exports, which fell 50% over the last four years due to the discriminatory action of the US Customs,��� a commerce department official, who did not wish to be named, said.

According to industry estimates, shrimp exports in 2008-09 are expected to clock Rs 611 crore, which is less than a third of the value of exports six years ago. However, the Seafood Exporters��� Association of India expects shrimp exports to cross Rs 1,000 crore in 2009-10.

The Indian victory was, in fact, short-lived since the WTO quashed the country���s claim that the anti-dumping agreement of the organisation did not allow additional financial imposition. This may lead to the US imposing additional duties on Indian shrimps, another official said.

India will monitor the situation and any attempt by the US Customs department to replace the bond by other forms of duties on shrimps would be challenged again at the WTO. The US had recently reduced anti-dumping duty on Indian shrimps to 0.79% last month from 1.69% ��� a fraction of the initial peak of 10%.

According to reports in the US media, the US Southern Shrimp Alliance has asked the country���s Customs department to implement new measures to collect duties on ���unfairly-traded��� shrimp imports as soon as possible.
















































































































































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