US Trade War: Increased Import Tariff hits Almonds, Walnuts

On May 2019, President Trump made his decision to remove India from the U.S Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) for more than 5 billion USD imports from India.

The American Government has been considering removing India from preferential trade agreement for over a year now. On 15th of June, India retaliated with Increased Tariff on 28 products imported from US including Almond and Walnuts.

India Biggest Market for US California Almonds, Walnuts and Apples

India is one of the biggest importer of California Almonds, Walnuts and Washington Apples in the World with annual shipments crossing over 900 million dollars.

Increased tariff is a worrying sign for agricultural producers and exporters in the US who are concerned about this year’s harvest sale.

Trade war with China has escalated to a level where they are on a verge of losing it as a major export market and now losing India as a trading partner will only make things worse.

India Retaliates with Increased Trade Tariffs

India announced on June 15th 2019, that it will impose and additional 20% tariff on almonds and walnuts from the U.S in response to removal from preferential trade status. Since trade war between US-China, India became the biggest alternative importer for both the countries.

There had been a sudden increase in import shipments from both US and China but US decision to remove India from GSP will hit US exporters of almonds and walnuts the hardest.

India already has 100% import tariff on walnuts from other countries and with 20% additional tariff on US walnuts there will be negligible import from the US.

US Almond Growers

India and China were the biggest markets for almonds from the US and now both the markets are disrupted. Speaking to an exporter of almonds in US who commented, “Almonds export to China has been disrupted since last year when they increased tariff from US almond by 50 Percent and with China market gone we turned to India.

Imports to India made up for the lost Chinese market and now with both markets in fray and we do not have any alternative.

The Government needs to resolve trade issues with India and China as we are highly dependent on foreign markets.”

This year’s expected almonds harvest in the US is approximately 1.1 Billion Kilograms which is almost 9 percent more than previous year harvest.

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