Will Make 'Tremendous' Trade Deal With India, Says U.S. President Trump Ahead Of His Maiden Visit To India
Days after the United States' government removed India from its list of 'developing countries', President Donald Trump on Friday stressed on the need to "talk a little business" with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his two-day visit to India.
He also said that the two countries could make a "tremendous" trade deal.
"I am going to India next week, and we are talking (about) trade. They have been hitting us very hard for many years. I like PM Modi, but we have got to talk a little business. They gave us tariffs. One of the highest tariffs in the world is those offered by India," the US President said in Washington after he claimed that India had not treated the United States "very well" on the trade front.
The US government on February 10, removed India from its list of 'developing countries' that are exempted from investigations into whether they harm American industry with unfairly subsidised exports. This move came on account of it being a G-20 member and having a share of 0.5 per cent or more of world trade.
India's share in global exports was 1.67 per cent while the global imports share was 2.57 per cent in 2018. The bilateral trade between India and the US in goods and services is about 3 per cent of the US' world trade, and India is now the United States' eighth-largest trading partner.
On February 18, Trump had indicated that a "very big" bilateral deal might not be signed before the American presidential election in November this year.
Government sources have claimed that while a major trade agreement seems doubtful during Trump's visit on February 24-25, India is likely to sign a deal to purchase 24 multi-role anti-submarine helicopters from American defence giant Lockheed Martin.
"Well, we can have a trade deal with India, but I'm really saving the big deal for later on," Trump said in Washington. "We're not treated very well by India," he said, adding that he likes Prime Minister Modi a lot."
The President said he still wants to do "a very big trade deal with India", but added, "I don't know if it will be done before the election."
He had also described India as a "tariff king" for imposing "tremendously high" rates on American products. India and US are preparing nearly five pacts on counter-terrorism cooperation, trade facilitation, and intellectual property rights. The pact on trade facilitation will aim at providing a single-window system for US firms willing to do business in India.